Marinduque Mainland from Tres Reyes Islands

Marinduque Mainland from Tres Reyes Islands
View of Marinduque Mainland from Tres Reyes Islands-Click on photo to link to Chateau Du Mer

WELCOME TO MY SITE AND HAVE A GOOD DAY

If this is your first time in this site, welcome. It has been my dream that my province, Marinduque, Philippines becomes a world tourist destination not only during Easter Week but also whole year round. You can help me achieve my dream by telling your friends about this site. The photo above is your own private beach at The Chateau Du Mer Beach Resort. The sand is not as white as Boracay, but it is only a few steps from your front yard and away from the mayhem and crowds of Boracay. Please do not forget to read the latest national, international, and technology news in this site . I have posted some of my favorite Filipino and American dishes and recipes on this site also. Some of the photos and videos on this site, I do not own. However, I have no intention on infringement of your copyrights. Cheers!

Saturday, August 29, 2015

2. Places Outside the United States that Macrine and I Had Visited-#2

Place #2 : Malaga, Marbella, Granada and Costa del Sol and Vicinity, Spain

Marbella Sea Side

Macrine and I visited the Costa del Sol area of Southern Spain, Marbella, Malaga and vicinity in 2000. We spent one week( October 5 to 13) in this coastal area of Spain. This was again through our International Interval Exchange Vacation Package. This is a time sharing experience that beats them all! Not even Cancun, Mexico or San Juan, Puerto Rico could equal the sights, sounds, the history and grandeur of the Costa del Sol area of Southern Spain. Our one week stay at the Four Seasons Resort and Country Club, in Marbella was not enough. We were joined midweek by our daughter Ditas and niece, Ella Lazarte from US. The highlights of our one week stay were the three one day tours that we took as follows:


1. Granada City Tour with Lunch with a visit to the Alhambra Castles and Gardens
This tour included a short driving tour of Malaga and passed by the bull ring staduim. On the way to Granada, we enjoyed the sights of almond and citrus trees and olive plantation. It also included a lunch for two. At that time it cost us 8500 pesetas ( exchange rate at that time was 170 pesetas equals $1). To me this is a bargain, since I do not have to drive or rent a car ($70 per day for car rental). In addition, the tour guide knowledge of the area help you appreciate the tour more. We met another American couple during this tour. Most of the tourists are English or Germans with a few Americans.


2. One Day Tour of Gibraltar, including a winding ride to the Top of the Rock with the Barbary Apes and St. Michael Cave and some free duty shopping (For details see Article No.3)

3. One Day Tour of Tangiers, Morocco, highlighted by shopping and a Moroccan lunch and a ride on a German Hydrofoil yatch across the Gibraltar Strait. (For details see Article No. 4).

The Spaniards were very friendly, and very willing to help and answer questions of tourists. With my knowledge of Spanish, I felt home right away. My maternal ancestry and roots in Spain made me want to return and perhaps stay a little while longer. One week is indeed not enough to really savour the delights of Southern Spain.

The food specially seafoods( paella), wines and pastries were delicious and served promptly with gusto. The resort personnel were very helpful in arranging taxi service, tour planning, tickets confirmation, wake-up calls and other services. Someday, I like to go back to Spain and perhaps visit Seville, Cordoba and Barcelona. Here's a short video about Malaga.



Málaga (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈmalaɣa]) is a city and a municipality in the Autonomous Community of Andalusia, Spain. With a population of 568,305 in 2009, it is the second most populous city of Andalusia and the sixth largest in the country. This is the southernmost large city in Europe. It lies on the Costa del Sol (Coast of the Sun) of the Mediterranean Sea, about 100 km (62.14 mi) east of the Strait of Gibraltar and about 130 km (80.78 mi) north of Africa.
Málaga enjoys a subtropical climate. Here are the warmest winters in Europe, with average temperatures above 17.2 °C (63.0 °F) during the day in the period December to February. The summer's season lasts about 8 months, from April to November, although also in December and March sometimes there are temperature above 20 °C (68.0 °F). Málaga, together with adjacent towns and municipalities such as Rincon de la Victoria, Torremolinos, Benalmadena, Fuengirola, Alhaurin de la Torre, Mijas and Marbella, forms the Málaga metropolitan area, with a population of 1,046,279 according to 2009 data.

Marbella

Marbella is a city in Andalusia, Spain, by the Mediterranean, situated in the province of Málaga, beneath La Concha mountain. In 2000 the city had 98,823 inhabitants, in 2004, 116,234, in 2010 circa 135,000.

Marbella and the nearby Puerto Banús are important beach resorts of the Costa del Sol. Marbella is a popular destination for tourists from Northern Europe, including the UK, Ireland and Germany as well as the US.

The area around Marbella is particularly popular with those who like golf. Marbella also hosts a WTA tennis tournament on red clay, the Andalucia Tennis Experience

Would you believe that Marbella and the whole Costa del Sol area is littered with Chinese restaurants? Across the bridge from the Four Seasons are two Chinese restaurants. Ditas and Ella were dying to have chinese food after their two weeks sojourn in the interior of Morocco (Fez). One day, while we were in downtown Marbella, I talked to a Chinese lady. She said there is a labor organization in Spain that imports Chinese waitresses and cooks to serve in 6-months rotation at restaurants in several cities of Spain and Italy. It sounds like the Philippines OFW ( Overseas Filipino Workers) program.

Note: This is No.2 ( Part 2) of a series of articles on places that Macrine and I had visited outside the US since 1960.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

1. Places Outside the United States that Macrine and I had Visited-#1

Place #1: Vancouver, Victoria and Whistler, British Columbia, Canada


This is Part 2 of a series of articles on places that Macrine and I had visited outside the US since 1960. Part 1 (No 1 to 30) were places that we either had resided or visited in the US including the Hawaiian Islands. This article is number 1.

The series will include our trips to Spain, Morocco, Rock of Gibraltar, London, Rome, The Vatican Cancun, Puerto Rico, Aruba, Toronto, Niagara Falls, Cuernavaca, Mexico and the Bahamas.

One of the fifteen places that my wife and I have visited outside the US was our trip in August, 2005 to Vancouver, Victoria and Whistler, B.C., Canada. . This was in connection with another Grand Reunion of Marinduque International, Inc- a non-profit organization organized to give free medical missions to Marinduque, Philippines. It was one week of Fun and Relaxation that we will always remember.

British Columbia is on the western coast of Canada. The climate of Vancouver is Mediterranean similar to San Francisco, California. Vancouver is about 2 hours drive north of Seattle, Washington and has also a large Filipino-American community. We enjoyed Stanley Park, Queen Elizabeth(Sunken Garden) Park and Exotic China Town. Historic Gas Town and the drive along English Bay Drive was great. We took a sunset dinner cruise along Vancouver Harbor passing through English Bay, False Creek, Burrard Inlet and under the Lions Gate bridge(photos above).


We took a tour of Victoria, the capital city of British Columbia. The tour started from Vancouver via a 90-minute ferry ride across Georgia Strait and the beautiful Gulf Islands. Included in the tour is an admission to the world famous Butchart Garden (photo above). Here's a short video of the Butchart Gardens, one of the most beautiful gardens in the world.

The tour included a 30 minute drive along Beach Drive with views of Juan De Fuca strait and the Olympic Mountains. We also passed by the Upland and Oak Bay Streets residential areas, the Royal Victoria Yatch Club and the University of Victoria ending at the Victoria Harbor. Photo of Victoria Inner Harbor at Night-from thelifeofluxury.com

The next day, we took a one-day tour to Whistler, site of the 2010 Winter Olympics. The scenic tour started with a relaxing drive up the Sea to Sky Highway which overlooks majestic Howe Sound with its panorama of mountain lakes and glaciers. Along the way we stopped at Shannon Falls, one of North America's waterfalls at the Squamish Forest Reserve.

Oo our way to Whistler, Canada-Photo from www. people.uleth.ca

We highly recommend the above three places in Western Canada for a relaxing and enjoyable vacation.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Chapter 6: The Ancestral Roots of the Nieva Clan of Marinduque-Epifania Morente



EPIFANIA MORENTE: FOUNDING MOTHER OF THE NIEVA CLAN: The wife of Calixto Nieva, the founding father of the present-day Nievas and other families who may not be surnamed Nieva but with Nieva blood flowing in their veins, was Epifania Morente nicknamed Maning. Thus, Maning could very well be referred to as the "Founding Mother" of the Nieva clan.

It is not known for sure if the Nievas who were originally from Camalig, Albay and who migrated to Marinduque had any foreign blood. But definitely, because of Calixto's marriage to Epifania, foreign blood was infused into the Nieva gene pool. I was told by the old folks that Maning was the oldest of four" love children of a Spanish friar with the name of Fr. Santiago del Rosario who was the parish priest of Boac in the early 1800s. Previously assigned in Bulacan, he brought along with him his mistress, a woman (name unknown) from a supposedly good family in Bulacan who was educated at one of Manila's leading school for women at the time.

It is believed that the mother of Epifania was given the priest's middle name of Morente. The priest himself must have been the a love child of a Spanish friar with a Filipina woman since such children were supposed to be given religious surnames like de los Santos, de Jesus or in the case of the priest, del Rosario.

Interestingly, to this day the lapida or tombstone of Fr. Del Rosario may be seen imbedded on the aisle of the Boac Cathedral, the only one such in the church. So when Nievas walk up the aisle, they better make sure they don't step on it. Give it the proper
respect it deserves. For without him, we Nievas would not be around today.

This is Chapter 6 of the series on the Ancestry of the Nieva clan of Marinduque authored by Rene Nieva. Previous Chapters have been published in my blogs just recently.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

The Ylang-Ylang Tree and Its Flowers


Photo of the Ylang-Ylang flower in my backyard, Chateau Du Mer, Marinduque, Philippines

This article was inspired by a friend's question regarding the best smell one has experienced. Mine is the smell of the blooming Ylang-Ylang trees in my garden at Chateau Du Mer, Boac, Marinduque, Philippines. I have two big mature trees in the backyard of Chateau Du Mer that are about 20 years old.

When the trees are in bloom, you can smell the fragrance of it flowers to as far as 50 meters and even farther if the wind direction is favorable. It is one fragrance, that I will never forget at Chateau Du Mer in Marinduque. Its reminds me of the perfume, Channel No.5.

The fragrance of ylang-ylang is rich and deep with notes of rubber and custard, and bright with hints of jasmine and neroli. The essential oil of the flower is obtained through steam distillation of the flowers and separated into different grades (extra; 1; 2; 3) according to when the distillates are obtained. The main aromatic components of ylang-ylang oil are benzyl acetate, linalool, p-cresyl methyl ether, and methyl benzoate, responsible for its characteristic odor.

On the subject of Ylang Ylang Oil,I am proud to inform readers of this blog that my Master’s degree thesis was the Analysis of the Volatile Constituents of Ylang Ylang Oil by Gas Chromatography. This was published in the Journal of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, Vol.52, No.3 252-258 dated March, 1963.

I believe not too many non-Filipinos have heard of this tree and it fragrant flowers. Here’s a short information from Wikipedia for your reading pleasure.

Cananga odorata, commonly called Ylang-ylang (pronounced /ˈiːlæŋ ˈiːlæŋ/, EE-lang-EE-lang), cananga tree, ilang-ilang, kenanga (Indonesian), fragrant cananga, Macassar-oil plant or perfume tree), is a tree valued for its perfume. The essential oil derived from the flowers is used in aromatherapy and in the manufacture of perfumes.

Cananga odorata is a fast-growing tree of the custard-apple family, Annonaceae, that exceeds 5 m (15 ft) per year and attains an average height of 12 m (40 ft). It grows in full or partial sun, and prefers the acidic soils of its native rain forest habitat. The evergreen leaves are smooth and glossy, oval, pointed, with wavy margins, and 13–20 cm (5–8 in) long. The flower is drooping, long-stalked, with six narrow greenish yellow (rarely pink) petals, rather like a sea star in appearance, and yields a highly fragrant essential oil.

The Chemical Composition Typical chemical compositions of the various grades of Ylang ylang are reported as follows:

Constituents Linalool, geranyl acetate, caryophyllene, p-cresyl, methyl ether, methyl benzoate, other, sesquiterpenes.

Etymology

The name ylang-ylang is derived from Tagalog, either from the word ilang, meaning “wilderness”, alluding to its natural habitat, or the word ilang-ilan, meaning “rare”, suggestive of its exceptionally delicate scent. A more widely accepted translation is “flower of flowers”. The plant is native to the Philippines and Indonesia and is commonly grown in Polynesia, Melanesia and Micronesia.

The essential oil of ylang-ylang is used in aromatherapy. It is believed to relieve high blood pressure, normalize sebum secretion for skin problems, and is considered to be an aphrodisiac. According to Margaret Mead, it was used as such by South Pacific natives such as the Solomons where she did much of her research. The oil from ylang-ylang is widely used in perfumery for oriental or floral themed perfumes (like Chanel No. 5). Ylang-ylang blends well with most floral, fruit and wood smells.

In Indonesia, ylang-ylang flowers are spread on the bed of newlywed couples. In the Philippines, its flowers, together with the flowers of the sampaguita, are strung into a necklace (lei) and worn by women and used to adorn religious images.

Medicinal uses

Ylang Ylang is a common ingredient in the herbal motion sickness remedy, MotionEaze.

Circulatory System: Ylang ylang is recommended for treating palpitations and reducing high blood pressure

Nervous System : Ylang ylang is known for its ability to slow down over-rapid breathing and over-rapid heart beat. These symptoms are usually associated with shock, anxiety and anger.

Reproductive System: Ylang ylang has proven beneficial for treating PMS, especially associated with extreme mood swings that occurs just before the onset of menstruation. For this purpose, Fischer-Rizzi recommends blending Ylang ylang with clary sage and neroli. This blend should be used in a bath, massage oil or in a vaporizer.

Skin care: Added to the skin care preparation, Ylang ylang oil is beneficial in softening and balancing the moisture of the skin. It is recommended in hair care to treat split ends. It can be used in a shampoo base of massaged into the tips of the hair after shampooing with a base oil such as apricot kernel or jojoba oil. Ylang ylang is recommended for dry and oily skin and is reputed to have a balancing action on sebum production.

I hope you find this article informative. It is the best smell, I have ever experience in my life.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Some of My Favorite Sunset Photos in Marinduque

The following are some of the sunset photos I have in my collections taken in Western Marinduque. Most of the photos were taken very close to the Chateau Du Mer Beach House in Amoingon in Boac.













DTaken from the Balcony of the Beach House









o you have a favorite photo? I really love sunsets! Sunset time is my favorite time of the day in Marinduque.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Latest News on Parkinso Disease Research


Last week, A FB friend and relative send me a note thanking me for the informative articles she has been following in my blogs. Specifically she mentioned my articles on Parkinson Disease. What attracted her attention is the fact that her mother was just recently diagnosed with PD. She wants to know what are the latest developments in the treatments of the disease as well as the medicines that my wife is currently taking.

As a result of this note, I did some Internet search on the latest research on PD that I am listing below. However, before you read the list, allow me again to post the following basic information about PD.

Parkinson's disease is a condition in which an area of the brain becomes progressively damaged over several years. The main signs of Parkinson's disease are tremor, slow movement, stiff and inflexible muscles. There is currently no cure for Parkinson’s disease. However, treatments are available to help reduce symptoms and maintain quality of life for as long as possible.

Therapy for Parkinson's disease focuses on treating the symptoms that undermine the patient’s quality of life - there is no cure.

Parkinson’s disease is caused by the destruction of dopamine-producing nerve cells, making it harder for the brain to control muscle movement.

Complications of Parkinson's disease includes chewing and swallowing difficulties, depression, sexual dysfunction and urinary incontinence.

There is no specific test for Parkinson’s disease, making it sometimes a difficult condition o diagnose, especially early on.

Risk factors for Parkinson’s disease include age, genetics, gender, toxin exposure and some medications such as anti-psychotics.

Current Therapy Recommendation: Medications, proper diet, daily exercise and social interaction. PD patients feel isolated and suffers side effects from the Carbo-Levo dopa medications specifically depression, nausea, itching, hallucination and loss of memory. These side effects can be mild or severe. If severe consult your neurologist.

Here are some of the latest Parkinson's disease research from prestigious universities and journals throughout the world.

1. Scientists probing molecular origins of Parkinson's disease highlight two proteins
Using a new approach to focus on relevant molecules, scientists discover two gene-regulating proteins that appear to protect neurons most affected by Parkinson's disease.

2.Parkinson's could be slowed with existing drug
A drug that has been used for decades to treat liver disease could be used to slow the progression of Parkinson's disease, according to researchers testing the drug on fruit flies.

3.Could sleeping on one's side reduce risk of Alzheimer's?
New research suggests that sleeping on one’s side is better for removal of brain waste, an accumulation of which may contribute to the development of neuro degenerative diseases.

4.Parkinson's disease risk 'lowered by diabetes drug'
Diabetes patients treated with glitazone have a lower risk of developing Parkinson's disease, suggesting the target of the drug could be a fruitful target for the condition.

5.Parkinson's disease may be treatable with antimalaria drugs
Breakthrough study shows existing malaria drugs directly activate the brain receptor Nurr1 and significantly reduce Parkinson's behavior in rats without inducing dyskinesia.

6.Parkinson's 'a risk factor for most cancers in Taiwan'
A new study has found a link between Parkinson's disease in Taiwanese patients and increased risk of 16 different cancer types, including colorectal, kidney, prostate cancers.

7.Parkinson's brain implant approved by FDA
A new implantable brain stimulation device has been given approval for reducing the symptoms of Parkinson's disease and essential tremor.

8.Depressed people may be at risk of Parkinson's disease
Researchers suggest that there is a direct association between Parkinson's disease and depression after conducting research over a timespan of more than 2 decades.

Source:http://www.medicalnewstoday.com

Personal Note: My wife was first diagnosed with PD in the winter of 2012. I could see the progression of this malady that affects the quality of her daily life and activities. She needs social interaction( e-mail, FB messages or phone call will be appreciated) from friends and relatives as well as your prayers.

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