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Terrible Smart & Smartbro Mobile Data Connections

It all started when I bought a Globe sim prepaid card. I loaded my tablet with 1-month worth of internet connection. (I loaded it with 1000 pesos worth of load then texted in caps SUPERSURF 999 sent it to 8888. Then you’ll receive a verification text of your 1-month prepaid subscription.) I had a steady internet connection, albeit a slow one. I found out that the area where I lived had a weak Globe connection. I can only get a semi-decent connection of H+ when my device is placed in my living room and barely a E and a one bar signal when in the bedroom.

When my 1-month of promo mobile data connection was up. I decided to switch to a Smart mobile sim card and again I loaded my Smart sim with a 1-month promo subscription like with what I did to my Globe. The signal was fine and everything.  I could even get a 3g and H+ signal in the bedroom. Unfortunately, those signals just didn’t reflect their actual performance and they were extremely erratic. How erratic? It’s like having a 3g signal reflected on the device and a “no internet connection”  reflected on a page you are trying to open. Anyway, half-way through my 1 month subscription, I couldn’t get a mobile data signal. I tried restarting my device, turning my mobile data off and on at intervals and even trying my sim to other devices. Still I got nothing. So I called the Smart toll free number about out it and they promised to get back to me within 24 hours. And even before the 24 hours was up, I got my mobile data signal back. And even with the snail-like and erratic signal, I stuck it out with Smart. It’s not like I can do anything about it since I am still subscribed for  a couple of weeks to Smart. And then less than a week after I got my mobile data back on track, I experienced again the same problem. I called Smart and they gave me a report reference number and promised to get back to me again after 24 hours. I waited for a day. And waited for another day. No mobile data. No feedback from Smart. I called Smart again and got their standard answer of waiting for 24 hours then gave me a new report reference number for my call. I waited for another 24 hours. So it was after three days that I realized my complaint wasn’t getting anywhere.

Then I caught myself thinking.  What if my Smart sim wasn’t working because I used it for internet and not for mobile calls. What if I should  buy their Smartbro. Their Smartbro is being marketed mainly for internet, right?  I should try the Smartbro. And so I did. Stupid me bought a new sim and loaded another 1000 pesos worth of load for my tablet and registered my load for a monthly internet promo again. I know I should have tried loading per day or per week but I honestly thought I could save money with a whole month subscription for 995 pesos compared to a 50-peso daily internet subscription or 300 pesos weekly. So I loaded my Smartbro for 30 days and like with my Smart, have signals as high as 3g but slow to nonexistent internet connections. I tried going to places where Smart boasts high 4g and LTE connections like La Paz here in Iloilo. Nada. Nothing. My mobile data shows connection of 3g(since my tablet is not 4g or LTE compatible), and should have had a decent internet connection. But no, I got zero connection. Thirteen days of unlimited internet connection down the drain.  I was robbed. Me, a regular, a mere nobody was screwed over by the biggest telecommunications in the Philippines. Again. And I know I would be wasting my time calling their helpline since I ‘ve already done that and nothing to show for it. Why would a telecommunication giant  listen to a single unknown and uninfluential customer right? I would be wasting my breath. Had in fact wasted my breath enough already.

So that is why today, I will be switching again to Globe. I may not get a strong signal from where I live but at least it is steady. At least it is honest with its signal. At least it doesn’t say 3g when the connection is close to nonexistent.

You might wonder why I don’t have a broadband connection at home when clearly I can afford one since what I pay for a monthly subscription of mobile data connection costs more or less the same with that of a broadband. I actually had a PLDT broadband connection but it got broken and reported it to PLDT, called and reported like 5x on ther helplines, visited their branch 3x but they didn’t act on it until my contract with them expired. On hindsight I should have known that Smart would screw me over. PLDT and Smart are sister companies so why should I expect the latter would be any better, right?

Postscript:
Do forgive me for my use of LTE, 4g, 3g, H, and E reference. I do not know their actual names or what they stand for. I only know of them to pertain kinds of internet speed based from what is reflected on my device and from what I see in ads. 🙂

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Nu Skin/Pharmanex Lifepak’s Review

When I went home to Cebu City last week, my closest first cousin and I had dinner and coffee together and were catching up on news about our lives since we last saw each other. Anyways, during our coffee she told me about this new supplement she is taking. She spoke very highly of this product–Nu Skin/Pharmanex Lifepak and told me that our mutual friends who are also taking this supplement all look and feel great. And my cousin did really looked great.  So naturally, my interest was peaked. I want to try the product so I decided to google the product reviews especially that this particular product costs P3300(Philippine peso)  or roughly around $77 (US dollars) for a 30 day worth of food supplements.  To my dismay,  i didn’t find any review for this particular product. But despite of that, I went ahead and bought this food supplement anyway.  I mean, my cousin looked great and she swore of the product’s efficacy. She is a good enough review of the product for me anyway.

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Pharmanex Lifepak Food Supplement

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You're to take this 4 caps at the same time

The lack of review of this product made me decide to make a review myself. This is my 3rd day of taking the product and I can’t see or feel any changes in my state of wellbeing. I will be updating this blog after four days since I’ll be making an update every week for a month.

On my 5th day of taking Pharmanex Lifepak I had a severe allergic rhinitis. I’m not saying my taking these vits triggered the allergies I’m just noting that my taking the vitamins didn’t in any way lessen the effects of my allergic rhinitis.

 

Oct. 2 – Week 1

Today is my 9th day of taking the vitamins and I noticed that ever since I started taking them, I have regular bowel movement and I don’t feel as tired and sleepy as I did before taking the food supplements.

 

October 10 – Week 2

I don’t really have anything to tell. I can’t see any changes at all. I still look the same. My skin didn’t get any clearer and my appetite is still the same. I must say that I survived a whole week without taking puffs on my seretide inhaler without a severe asthma attack, just some minor ones like feeling slight congestion on my chest. (I was supposed to take seretide puffs 2x in the morning and 2x on the evenings everyday.)

More update next week 🙂

I finished my 1 pack of Lifepak supplements. Although I don’t feel and see any different at all, I must say that I didn’t suffer asthma attacks or some difficulty of breathing while taking this supplements. Considering that I’m not religious with my getting puffs on my maintenance of seretide everyday, I think that is some sort of achievement, and I’m giving credit to Lifepak’s food supplements. Other than my regular bowel movement and lessening of frequency with my recurrent yet sporadic asthma attacks, I can’t see or feel any major difference in my wellbeing and appearance. I mean for the money that I paid for it, I kind of expected more from the product. Like, I don’t know– a miracle, perhaps? Hehe It’s just that a regular, middle income person like me do not shell out this amount of money for just a “regular” food supplement. I had expected something more. My skin didn’t get any clearer and I didn’t look younger than I had hoped I would. This product is good–no doubt about it. But the question is, would I use it regularly? Yes, if I have the money to “maintain” a food supplement as costly as this one. All I’m saying is that this product is exactly what it is–a food supplement. But, there are many food supplements that are as effective but a lot less costlier than Lifepak’s. I am beginning to think that whilst it’s probably true my cousin is taking this food supplement, she is also taking something else that made her look great– a beauty secret that she didn’t share with me.

Optrimax Plum Delite Review

 

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So I had just eaten my first pruned plum tonight. I drank two glasses of water after because they said that’s what I’m supposed to do. It may not be on the written instruction of the package but my dealer advised me and it’s also mentioned on their website and other online blog reviews.  I will be doing a review on this 10-day pack which claims to be a very helpful aid in losing weight. They are marketing this product for colon cleansing, and of course, the magnet that made this so appealing to me–weight loss.

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Update:
I had originally planned on updating this review every two days whileI was taking it, but since I had nothing to report I just didn’t bother. I don’t know why my experience was so totally unlike other blog reviews. Maybe it’s partly because most of the bloggers who reviewed this product are also sellers. I don’t think my colon was cleansed since I didn’t experience anything extraordinary with my bowel movement. If anything, I noticed I had even lesser “output” (for lack of a better word) while I was taking it. I just didn’t lose any weight. I weighed absolutely the same after the 10-day intake of plum as I did before I started.  My eating habits didn’t change before and during those ten days too. The only upside I can say about the product is that I kind of liked the taste of the dried prune.

It was just a waste of money for me. My  php1,200.00 down the drain with nothing to show for it. Perhaps it’s just me and my stubborn metabolism. Perhaps I should have continued this Plum Delite regimen for a month then I could have lost some weight. But then again, perhaps it would have been more of my money wasted.

My Mad Fat Diary

A young friend of mine recommended this tv series  My Mad Fat Diary and told me I would enjoy watching the show. And I did. He knew me pretty well, this friend of mine. We both loved the show.  I was pretty down, you see, after the Outlander midseason finale.

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My Mad Fat Diary is a British teenage comedy/drama and was probably intended for the teen population and the young adult (like my young friend) and not for a married woman in her late thirties. But I loved the show. I guess I’m just young at heart. Anyway, as someone who is used to watching American movies and tv shows and because English is just my third language, I had trouble understanding the first three minutes because of the British accent. But after that, I was hooked.
And also I just love their soundtracks. I’m going to search and download all the songs from the show.

And as always, I googled this tv series and found out that it was based on a book from Rae Earl’s diary My Fat Mad Teenage Diary. Sharon Rooney is just fantastic as Rae Earl. And Nico Mirallegro, well let’s just say that if I were still fifteen years younger  I’d migrate to the UK just to ask him out 😉

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The second season finale was so good I’m not sure I want to watch a third season where they will split up again and hook up with other people. I don’t think I would want a “TO BE CONTINUED” after that season 2 ending.

And because I loved the show so much I read the book My Fat Mad Teenage Diary. I know the story was based on actual events of the life of Rae Earl but I love the show better. The story was okay, I guess. But the abrupt ending left me hanging. It was like a story cut short before the climax and there was no resolution. I know it was a diary made into a book but I expected something at the end. I didn’t even realize it was the last page. It was like reading a suspense story and just before the good stuff, you discovered the last few pages were missing and nowhere to be found.  I know there is a book #2 out there but you know, I guess I just want some sort of resolution or ending in every book I read even if there’s going to be a sequel to the story.

Outlander: The TV Series

Let me start off by saying I am an Outlander book series fan for some couple of years already. In fact, way when the social network Friendster was popular, I wrote on my About Me column that Jamie Fraser was my ultimate crush.  So when I learned that an Outlander TV series was on the make, I was so excited. But it was a bit of a letdown when I learned that I can’t view it on tv since no cable company here in my country is going to air Outlander. But thanks to the internet I wasn’t overly worried on not being able to watch the show.

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                       (photo credits to owner)

I was able to get updates on the making of Outlander thru my fave author and creator of Jamie Fraser, Ms Diana Gabaldon’s Facebook page. And when I saw Sam Heughan as Jamie for the first time, OH MY GOD I almost swooned. He was the Jamie I have had in my head since I first read the book. The rest of the cast? Well,  I must confess I didn’t pay attention to them that much.

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photo credits to owner

             Sam Heughan as Jamie Fraser( photo credits to owner)

I was able to view all the episodes via online streaming and I must say that the tv series did justice to the book. My once previous disinterest of the other cast from the series quickly turned into curiosity. Then admiration. I am ashamed now how I had disregarded the rest of the cast when they are the ones who, on the whole, made the Outlander tv series come alive. I mean,Sam Heughan’s presence as Jamie on the screen can only do so much but it is the supporting characters that made the show interesting and fun to watch.  It is impossible for me to ignore the performances of Graham Mctavish, Duncan Lacroix,  Grant O’Rourke, Stephen Walters, Bill Paterson and the rest of the highlanders cast. Caitriona Balfe is perfect as Claire too.

When I heard that Tobias Menzies was going to be Frank/Black Jack Randall I was pretty skeptical. I knew him only as Edmure Tully from Game of Thrones and I couldn’ t imagine him as anyone else. But lo and behold, Tobias Menzies totally owned Frank/Black Jack Randall. I am utterly amazed by his performances. He was so outstanding on the episode “Garrison Commander.” He made me hate Black Jack Randall yet made me feel in awe of him as an actor at the same time. I am forever his fan.  And I must confess that I am now crushing on him. Don’t get me wrong. I still love Jamie and still think Sam Heughan is hot and perfect for the role but it is Tobias Menzies that I look forward to watching on the show.

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      (photo credits to owner)

The second half of season one will be aired on April of 2015. This is six months of waiting for me. I guess I’ll just reread Outlander again. And this time, I now have faces to place on the characters of the book.

When my immigrant mom said, “Johnny Depp who?”

First off, let me tell you that my mom is a US immigrant and has just been to the US of A since last November only. She just turned 66 last March 13 which was also the day she met Johnny Depp. In person. I’ll be telling the story as she told me.

My mom, Aunt Joy (mom’s sister) and Uncle Clemie (mom and aunt Joy’s cousin) had dinner in a restaurant in West Hollywood to celebrate mom’s birthday. On their way out, my mom almost collided into someone who was wearing a hat and walking with his head down. When he looked up, my mom didn’t recognize him but my aunt and uncle did. They were all agog.  So my mom asked them who he was. “That’s Johnny Depp!”, my aunt and uncle answered in unison.  She asked again. “Johnny who?” My aunt then distractedly elaborated that Johnny Depp was an actor, all the while looking at Johnny Depp.

With typical mom’s impulsivity, she marched straight to Johnny Depp and asked if she can have a picture taken with him.  Mr. Depp was ever so graceful and said yes. My mom was impressed.  She said Johnny Depp was so nice. Just when he started to walk away after their picture was taken.  My mom grabbed him and asked again to have his picture taken with her sister (my aunt). My mom didn’t even notice that the three bodyguards who came closer to her the moment she grabbed Johnny Depp.  According to my mom, she noticed three men who stood close to her and she just thought that they were fans of his too who also wanted to have pictures taken with the actor.

People who were nearby started noticing Johnny Depp’s presence and “oh my God that’s Johnny Depp!” can be heard as people in the area began to recognize him. Well, it was probably thanks to my mom that Johnny Depp made a quick escape soon after.

My mom asked my aunt again who Johnny Depp was and if he was popular.  My aunt and uncle laughed and told her that Johnny Depp–the man they had their picture taken with–was a Hollywood superstar and those men with him were his bodyguards.  You know what my mom said? She said that if she’d known Johnny Depp was really famous, she wouldn’t have the guts to ask for his picture. She just thought that Mr. Depp was a struggling actor on a soap opera.

At least now she knows and she is starstruck.  She sent texts to her friends and relatives that she met Johnny Depp. She even made their picture her facebook cover photo.

Of Friends and the Games They Played

The saddest thing about betrayal is that it never comes from your enemies. It comes from friends and loved ones.

Ever had a friend who made you a scapegoat to their own follies?  I know I shouldn’t be calling them friends since being made a scapegoat isn’t a trait of a real friend, but you know what I mean.   I was a victim of this so-called friend of mine.Image

I went back to college a few years back as a mature student and it was there that I met Rebecca(not her true name). She was a classmate of mine.  Like me, she was also a mature student, married and with kids. And she and I are the same age. Plus we also live in the same district.  So we hit it right off (or so I thought). We also have the same circle of friends. Although I look way younger and prettier (and I’m saying that without vanity), her glib of tongue and confidence more than made up for her shortcomings.  Don’t get me wrong. She isn’t ugly but she isn’t pretty either. Oh, and she is married into some money. Anyway, when we were in our 3rd year, our mutual friends and I noticed that her absences were becoming frequent and that when she came to class, she was constantly talking on her mobile phone.  Then she shared with us that she had a male phone pal and that they already met in person. We didn’t know the extent of Rebecca and her phone pal’s friendship since we seldom saw her in class anymore. One time she invited us for dinner and a night out at our local go-to nightlife destination.  We went to a dance club after dinner where she promptly left us and had us wait for her until 4 am. She texted us to wait for her and that she’ll be back very soon. Very soon turned to hours of waiting.  She left us at the club before midnight and came back at 4 am. We asked her where she’d been but she just shrugged and gave us a very vague answer.

This continued until one day, Rebecca came to class with swollen eyes. She told us that she was quitting school and that she and her husband were splitting up. We didn’t ask why and we didn’t want to pry. In our minds, we knew this was something to do with her “friendship” with another man.  And she really did quit in the middle of the semester.  We didn’t see her for some time but had some contact with her through text. During one of her texts, we learned that she and her husband reconciled. Good news.  We were happy for her.

The next time we saw her, she was at school to enroll again. And she was like five months on the way. Almost exactly a year she quit going to class. I was on my last term in school and graduating in about a month and a half’s time, doing my internship and was also three months pregnant with my youngest child. I was pleased to see her again.

One time we went to visit Rebecca at her house.  Her husband was there. And he was drunk.  So we didn’t get inside their house and just talked on their patio.  When her husband saw me, he walked toward me in a confrontational manner but Rebecca blocked his path and pulled him inside their house.  We could hear them talking loudly but we couldn’t hear the words they were saying. Until I heard her husband mention my name.  My friends and I looked at each other but shrugged that off.  Her husband was drunk and drunk people sometimes say and do foolish things.

Oh did I mention that Rebecca and I lived in the same district? Oh yeah, I did. Her niece was a schoolmate of my two daughters too until last year.  Anyway, a parent from my two daughters school who I had a hi-hello acquaintanceship came to sit by me one time when I visited my daughters’ school.  She asked me if I was still studying at this university.  I wasn’t surprised she knew where I studied since parents like her who doesn’t have anything to do but wait on their children at school tend to gossip about people especially other parents. After a while and after making some small talk, she leaned over to me with a conspiratorial air and said that there is something I should know.  She then proceeded to tell me that “someone” in school (my daughters’ school)  who knows a  “friend of mine” from my university had told her that I had an “affair”.  She said she decided to tell me because she didn’t think it was true and that I should know what is being said behind my back.  I was STUNNED. I was HORRIFIED. WHAT. THE. HELL. I didn’t even remember what I said to her after what she told me. I didn’t even remember uttering a denial.  But I’m glad she told me.  Whatever her reasons were I was glad she did.

After I got over the shock, realizations did set in. And all the things clicked into place.  I remembered that:

1. Rebecca’s husband seems to want to talk, nay–confront me on something when Rebecca blocked him and pulled him away.
2. I remembered why my then fifth-grade daughter told her closest classmate that she had a secret about me (that secret was about my pregnancy which she considered being wonderful news). Her classmate immediately said that he knew what my secret was and that my secret was that I had a lover. Suffice to say that there was a fight after that. When my daughter went home that day, she told me about it and I remembered telling her to ignore her classmate and that what he said was the result of unmonitored and too much exposure of soap operas at home instead of studying.
3. I remembered that Rebecca’s niece was a schoolmate of my daughters and that Rebecca’s cousin-in-law was one of the parents I just mentioned–parents with having nothing to do but wait on their children at school.
4. That as far as I can remember, the only “friend” of mine at the university who lived in the same part of town is the same person who our classmates, common friends and even teachers knew to have had a “friendship” with another man and that “friendship”  may have been the reason she and her husband separated for a while and why she quit school in the middle of a semester.
5. That I am most likely been made a scapegoat of someone I considered a friend.
6. That the parents on the PTA of my daughters’ school think that I did all that. And that probably account to their fake smiles when I attend meetings.  I thought their fake smiles were because of envy since my daughters are consistent honor students and that my sixth grader just happens to hold the academic number 1 spot since 4th grade and now the valedictorian of her class on her graduation a few days from now.
7. And that it explained Rebecca’s cousin-in-law snubbing me during a chance encounter at a mall when she used to smile and nod at me every time we meet.

I wonder what tales Rebecca spun about me. I wonder what role was I supposed to have been playing in her diabolical scheme of her then marital woes. I really thought she was a friend. Why me? What did I ever do to her?

And since I can’t wheedle the name of the weasel who spread this malicious what consoles me is that my husband and kids know me and know the truth.