This year has been full of ups and downs, and not just in a typical way of describing years in general, but an actual experience of highs and lows a person could endure in a span of 360-something days.

On the first day of 2015 I found myself crying my eyes out, and who knows? Maybe I might do the same as it ends, although I sure hope not to.



It has been a year full of travel, opportunity, and new things defined by the experiences life decided to throw at me, and instead of hanging on to the bad, I am choosing to draw more attention to the good. It has definitely been a roller coaster, and though there also maybe a lot of dull moments in between, there are some moments that go beyond just being mundane experiences, these experiences are the definite highlights of my 2015:

My lasts with my friends (January) – Cebu City will forever have a huge part in my heart and my life. Although I’ve only lived there for a few months, it is the place where I first became independent, and opened myself to a lot of different possibilities and opportunities. Even if my experiences in that city happened in the better part of the previous year, I’m still counting 2015, because January was the month I came back there, and said my goodbyes.


For my last few days in the Philippines, I decided to spend quality time with all of my best friends together and separately. I was always in the beach (the place I would miss the most) with the people I trust the most.

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Moving to America (February) – It took a while before the thought of moving to another country finally sunk in. In a way, I think it still hasn’t. That was probably the biggest decision I’ve ever had to make in my entire life, a decision which, wasn’t exactly all up to me. Everything up to this point was always somebody else’s plan that I just decided to ride along with. Maybe it was the right time, maybe there was a reason behind it, whatever it is, I hope eventually it’s a choice that I would never have regrets with.

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Traveling to LA (April) – I know I’ve always traveled on my own and with my friends back home, but this was actually my first time in this country.. I had a weird experience on the bus because a crazy woman sat next to me and talked my ear off, but despite that, the short trip with Rose Ann was extremely fun, and we got to meet some of our high school friends in California so it was a bit of a mini reunion as well.


Getting a job (June) – I also wrote a blog about the trials of job hunting and waiting (and waiting, and waiting) for results. The first day of the month of June was also the first day of my first job in the States, it was a multitude of firsts that I was very thankful for, and I feel lucky to meet a lot of new awesome people.


My 22nd Birthday (August) – When you think of a birthday age higher than 20, and celebrating it in none other than Las Vegas, then you’d probably think a night pretty similar to “The Hangover.” What I did was the polar opposite of just that: a simple pizza dinner with my family, and I enjoyed it so much. Also, (forgive me for fan-girling) one of my best friends got Alden Richards to greet me.

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My younger sister is finally here! (October) – There’s a lot of pros and cons to this, but at least now I don’t get to be all alone, and I have someone to boss around. Plus, we also got to go around LA when we picked her up from the airport.

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Visiting Friends – My favorite thing about being Filipino is the fact that we are literally everywhere, so when you are in another city, country  or continent, all you have to do is look up the most common Filipino spot, ask around, and someone is definitely bound to know your friend’s cousin’s mother’s neighbor somewhere. So when I have friends coming to this city, I’d gladly go and spend time with them.

(May) My buddy since grade school Beanca came to visit and spent ten days of her vacation with me. It was fun because I was still new here, so we were both getting lost and wandering the city together. Plus, we both got to see Avicii, and I met Caspar Lee!

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Louise & Nikka came to visit and me and Rose Ann went around the city with them.


(June) Met up with a bunch of old and new friends and spent a super fun night with them.

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(July) On two separate occasions, one of my good friends from Bacolod, Joeliah came to spend weekends in my city, and we just had a bunch of adventures, and funny stories to tell.

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(August) Manang Redj, my co-volunteer at the Negros Museum back in Bacolod, came to visit my city with her husband, and we just spent the whole day, talking, drinking, catching up, having lots of fun, and complaining about the summer heat.


(October) my soul-brother, Aeson & his family came to Vegas as one of the places to visit in their US vacation. By this time, my younger sister was also already here, so there were a lot of us who went around the city at night, meeting lots of different people, and just having a blast.

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Bea, finally came back to the states and went to see me. It was a super tiring couple of days because it was non-stop partying, walking around the strip, doing touristy things and drinking. Plus I spent my very first American Halloween too. It was definitely some experience!

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(December) The second time around for Joe, who this time brought her friends Nikki and Eric with her.

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So pretty much, my whole year’s been spent missing home, and having a taste of it when I have people from home come over to see me. I can’t wait for next year. To more birthdays, travels, and friends. Thank you 2015!


xx Gizel

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