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Friday, January 30, 2015

Talking about the world. And all about a last supper with an ambassador.

Last night, in Manila living a #Travelife, I had dinner with an ambassador leaving the Philippines for good today, and it was just the two of us.

It's the second time this week that an ambassador has chosen to spend "the last supper" with me -- meaning the very last evening before leaving the country and returning home.

On Thursday night, I also had dinner with an ambassador and his wife, after all their official functions were completed.

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Yesterday was very nice, and it was the kind of dinner I needed.

It was very relaxed and, over a Japanese dinner, we talked about everything, from history and politics to the changes happening in the world, to culture and psychology.

In Tokyo, perhaps because it's a world capital, these kinds of conversations take place at dinners all the time -- and it's very stimulating.

Last night's conversations made me decide to keep on learning as much more about this wonderful world as I possibly can -- for that's truly what a never-ending #Travelife is all about.

Planning a Travelife to Sri Lanka, including a glamping experience in a tea plantation and a special afternoon tea in Colombo

This photo, from my very first trip to Sri Lanka,
just as I was about to ride a horse, brings back memories.
This was taken near the ancient city of Anuradhapura,
living a #Travelife.
So these days I've been quite busy finalizing a trip to Sri Lanka for a group of friends next month. It's going to be a nice luxury trip with lots of culture, good food, shopping and exclusive experiences.

We've even booked almost the entire business class section of an airplane for this pretty special trip.

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For this #Travelife to Sri Lanka, I'm pulling out all the stops and running through all my contacts to create something very special.

No one travels like us. Or writes like us. Or plans a trip like us, after all. And fortunately, I know a lot of people in Colombo.

Aside from the usual tourist stuff, we're also going to be visiting several beautiful homes, meeting some interesting and very prominent local personalities, and even watching a tea auction in action.

Sri Lanka is famous for tea, after all.


And speaking of tea, I'm organising two very special tea experiences in Sri Lanka.

One is an afternoon tea party in a beautiful home in Colombo, while the other is a high tea event in the middle of nowhere in a tea plantation up in the hills.

Then, of course, I'm taking everyone to some of my favourite shops and restaurants.


It'll be so nice to be in Sri Lanka again, as I haven't been here in two years.

I can't wait to stock up on ayurveda stuff and to shop for more local crafts, as well as to get away from everything and head for the hills of central Sri Lanka, full of natural beauty.

In other words, it's going to be another wonderful trip in my never-ending, and never-endingly eventful #Travelife.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Happy birthday, Australia. And about a long, last dinner with an ambassador and his wife.

A children's choir performs at the
Australia National Day party tonight 

My long and happy evening tonight, living a #Travelife, began at the Makati Shangri-la for a party to celebrate the national day of Australia, hosted by the Ambassador of Australia.

I've had the pleasure of knowing the ambassador of Australia since his first days in the Philippines, as we'd been seated next to each other at a formal dinner when he'd first arrived.

And tonight, his party took up the entire ballroom of the Makati Shangri-la, and what a big party it really was. When I entered, I glanced around the room, and it seemed like everyone who was anyone in this small town was there.

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I was really happy to bump into a couple of friends I hadn't seen in a very long time.

If I had walked around the room a little more, I'm sure I would've seen more friends. Unfortunately, I had a 730 PM appointment in the lobby, so I could only stay at the party for about 30 minutes.

To make sure I made it on time for my next appointment, I even set the alarm clock on my watch, as I was sure I would get carried away talking if I didn't mind the time.


Then for dinner, an ambassador and his wife and I went to a popular restaurant at the Fort.

We met at the Shangri-la lobby and went together to the restaurant, which was the special request of the ambassador himself.


Tonight was their last night in Manila before leaving the Philippines tomorrow, and they'd only placed two appointments on their calendar for today -- one of them was dinner with me.

This ambassador and his wife are very prominent in Manila society, and until yesterday, they'd been wined and dined by the Who's Who of Manila.

I, too, had hosted a sit-down farewell dinner for them with a couple of surprise VIP guests.


But they'd reserved tonight for me, and the three of us went for a nice casual dinner, reminiscing about old times, and also planning for future ones.

At the last minute, someone else joined us, and the four of us had a very nice time, in Manila, living a never-ending, and never-endingly eventful #Travelife.