Pia Besmonte

is back

Bridal Fair and Filipino Entitlement

The fiancé and I woke up early to attend the “Here Comes Thy Guide” Bridal Fair in Tagaytay. We spent the whole day wrapped in fog and rain.

Bulalo for Breakfast and the Oxymoron of Filipino Entitlement

We didn’t get a chance to have a bite of breakfast at home so we asked to drive by Leslie’s for some warm sabaw (soup). The place was empty when we got there. We ordered a bowl of bulalo (beef marrow soup) and fried tawilis (freshwater herring).

The fiancé told me that his family ate there once. There was a performer who was missing most of his front teeth taking song requests. One of the fiancé’s relatives requested Journey’s Faithfully, without much expectation. The performer killed it.

As the brunch was winding down, I received a message from Nana asking permission to get Mango some fish meat (he eats semi-solids now). We had already left cash for them (Nana and Auntie) to spend however they see fit. The fiancé asked me why Filipinos don’t assume any kind of entitlement.

I told him that it comes from being underprivileged since birth, sometimes for generations. It comes from being colonized and dispossessed. We are not raised by family, church, school, and society to demand things.

For Filipinos it has always been this: ask only for what you need. The rest is excessive and sinful. We can be so poor that we are grateful even if we only have our lives left. As long as we are alive we can rebuild.

This is why Filipinos don’t feel they have agency when it comes to politics. The average undereducated Filipino hates activists and unions — for them rallies and strikes are an “inconvenience”.

This is why poor people rely upon luck, the lottery, network marketing, get-rich-quick schemes instead of working slowly towards financial stability.

This is why the waiter who processed our bill was confused when we gave more than the amount indicated on the receipt. Tipping is not common in the Philippines.

More on this later. We were an hour late for the fair.

Bridal Fair

We went at the invitation of our wedding planner. This is Mavie, our wedding planner:

the pinayist bridal fair Mavie events

With Mavie’s help, we booked the last three suppliers for our January 2018 wedding. There are a thousand more decisions to make, but at least we already know the persons and businesses with whom we will be working.


This is our beautiful wedding website, made by the fiancé. He had to learn how to make an RSVP form for four different itineraries using Typeform. It took him three weeks.

I asked him for permission to write about him. I assured him I won’t use his name. You know what he said?

“Use it! So everybody knows it is me marrying Pia Besmonte!”

His name is Dexter.

Newly discovered, been around for a while

After we left the fair, we asked our driver for the day some recommendations for a decent full body massage place. He said something to the effect of say no more fam, and took us to Nurture Wellness Village.

the pinayist nurture wellness village

We got a package called Mangsing-Irog Massage (Lovers’ Massage). They led us to the massage room (named Gayuma, or love potion) which was quite a long but leisurely walk inside the compound. The place was beautifully landscaped. Trees and plants everywhere.

The massage was glorious. My therapist Rissa was skillful, and she worked on my back pain like a CHED scholar during finals.

Apparently they’ve been around for 16 years. We vowed to come back, maybe even stay at their BnB next time.

Phallic Pastas

There’s something irresistible about gourmet menus. The fiancé craved for Italian so we had dinner at Taza in Taal Vista Hotel. They always need to make food sound more sophisticated than they really are.

For instance:


Salsa Verde with Pancetta

When it arrived it was thin-crust pesto and bacon pizza. Not to mention drowning in olive oil. It was good.

Because we never get to go on non-parent, couple dates anymore, I decided to get the most pricey pasta: the Lobster Fettuccine. It turned out like this:

the pinayist Taza lobster fettuccine

It was delicious. And sexually suggestive.

A Note to Car Rentals

We arrived home at 10pm, after a short altercation with the car rental. It was supposed to be a complimentary trip because they booked us for two days in excess of our previous itinerary. The fiancé booked from 7 am to 9pm for a day trip to Tagaytay, never mind the second day. Instead they wanted us to pay for the hours in excess of one day.

Car rental companies need to streamline the process from booking to contracts to billing. It is such an inconvenience to argue with your drivers for things that we have agreed upon in the contracts.

The concept of car rentals is supposed to be good because

not buying a car – carbon footprint = not contributing to climate change

Let’s not make it so complicated.

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