June 30, 2013

Indonesia Adventure

We were at Indonesia last week for the SEARCH Summit 2013. Most of the time we just stayed at Hyatt Regency Yogyakarta, the venue of the summit and the hotel where we are also staying. It was a great hotel and we had a good time there.

On the afternoon on the last day of the summit, the GDG SEA leads with Chelle, Uttam and Van went to Borobodur Temple. Borobodur Temple is one of the oldest Buddhist temples in the world and is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It was a long trip and we arrived at least an hour before closing. There were a lot of people (mostly tourists) climbing the stairs and taking pictures. It was good that we were there during sunset because it is no longer that hot.

Photo from Celine

After the long trip, we went back to the hotel and had a few minutes rest. We then went to Ikan Bakar Jimbaran for our Balinese dinner. We have banana leaves as plates and we ate with our hands.

Photo from Josan

The next day is our time to see the rest of Yogyakarta. It was great that Reymart have friends nearby, Bella and Titis, who not only gave us a tour but also drove us around. Our first stop is Universitas Gadjah Mada (UGM). Bella and Titis are still students there. They had this sunday morning market where you can find lots of different stuff. They also have a mosque inside the campus.

Photo from Josan

Next, we went to Taman Sari Water Palace which used to be the residence of the Sultan. There were pools which was said to be where the palace chooses his girls. We looked around inside the changing rooms inside. We stopped to buy refreshments then walked to Masjid Bawah Tanah underground temple. We then had late lunch at House of Raminten. We were seating on the floor and had tried different Indonesian food that were not available in Hyatt. The food there tastes good and affordable too.

Photo from Keshan

Our last stop was Malioboro. It is a shopping street in Yogyakarta. There are a lot of stores there. We then went back to the hotel afterwards.

This was also my first time to be in Indonesia and it was great to be in Yogyakarta. I am hoping I can be back there and also other places in Indonesia too.

June 27, 2013

Search Summit 2013

We were invited to attend the Search Summit 2013 in Hyatt Regency Yogyakarta in Indonesia from June 20 to 22. The SEARCH (South East Asia Outreach) Summit is a conference to bring together the Google communities across South East Asia: Google Business Groups (GBGs), the MapMakers, the Google Student Ambassadors (GSAs), and of course the the Google Developer Groups (GDGs). It was the first of its kind and it was a great experience to be a part of it.

Taken from http://www.seaoutreachsummit.com

On the afternoon of June 19, we went to the airport, along with the other delegates from the Philippines. While waiting for our flight, the GDG managers (Celine, Josan, Anne, Reymart, Theo, Ruben and me) started our plans for the DevFests in the country for 2013.

Photo from Celine

After the four-hour Cebu Pacific flight to Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) Low-cost Carrier Terminal (LCCT), we went to the Plaza Premium Lounge to stay for the night. Our flight to Yogyakarta is at nine in the morning the next day. We arrived in Yogyakarta Adisucipto International Airport around noontime of June 20 and a shuttle picked us up to the hotel. It was around one in the afternoon already . We only had a few minutes to prepare and have lunch because the keynote starts at 2:30 PM. We checked in to our rooms, took a bath and changed into our national costumes.

Me in barong with the Android tarp

In the first day of the summit, there were talks from different countries sharing about their communities. After that, we were separated into our own track. The best session was Dan Franc's GDG Wisdom. After dinner, we had drinks with the GDG SEA leads, Chelle, Uttam and Van.

(Photo from Josan Dometita)

On the second day, we joined the GBG leads for Dan Franc's Community 2.0 session. In the afternoon, we had talks about Dev Updates from Google I/O, Google for Entrepreneurs, HTMl5, App Monetization, and Diversity. Then there was a cultural show near the poolside during dinnertime. The GSAs had their different presentations. After that, Josan, Anne, Celine and I went for a swim before sleeping.

In the third day, we had GDG managers sharing their experiences: Samdy from GDG Phonm Penh (keeping the community engaged), Ruben from GDG Cebu (collaboration among communities), Louis from GDG Singapore (PlugFest), and Josan from GDG CDO (Student Dev Day). After the talks, we had swags exchange and GDG tattoo session.

GDG SEA Leads in the Summit (Photo from Josan Dometita)

June 18, 2013

Cebu Weekend

Last weekend (June 15-16), Celine and I went to Cebu for another USJR Google Apps Training. On Friday night, we had dinner at Tokyo Tokyo Greenbelt 1 and had difficulty hailing a cab. We still arrived in NAIA but found out our flight will be delayed by around an hour. We arrived in Cebu around one in the morning and went straight to The Center Suites to sleep.

On the morning of June 15, Lora picked us up at the hotel and we went to USJR. The attendees of the training were both teaching and non-teaching staff.

The trainees

After the training, we had dinner at Koa Tree House (cheese sticks and fries) and La Bella Napoli (pesto and Diabola pizza).

After dinner, we went back to the hotel, watched a few TV shows then slept early. The next day, we went to the airport at around four in the morning and had breakfast (pork steamed rice) at Tsim Sha Tsui Dimsum & Tea Bar.

June 16, 2013

Ozamiz Weekend

Celine and I went to Ozamiz last May 24-26 for a two-day Google Apps training for La Salle University Ozamiz. There were only a single flight to Ozamiz so we had to go early morning of May 24. The Ozamiz Airport was a bit small and the claiming of baggages is manual. We went straight to the campus after seeing Miss Leslyn from LSU.

The first day of training was for the faculty. At lunch time, we went to Royal Garden Hotel to check-in and eat at Hukad Sa Golden Cowrie. Our lunch was Baked Scallops, Bicol Express, and Tuna Sticks. Afterwards, we went back to LSU for the continuation of the training.

After the afternoon session, we went back to the hotel to have a few minutes rest. We visited the Immaculate Concepcion Cathedral and had early dinner at the nearby Mooon Cafe. I ordered Spaghetti ala Gambas while Celine had Quesedilla Vera Cruz. We then went to Shoppers Plaza Ozamiz City, a grocery to buy water before going back to the hotel. At the hotel, we had Red Velvet and Sinful Chocolate cake slices at The Coffee Lounge. After that, we slept early. At around eight in the evening, most of the stores are already closed so it's dark outside.

Our dinner at Mooon Cafe

The next day, we had breakfast in Jollibee then went to the LSU campus for the second day of the training, which is for non-teaching staff. For lunch, Miss Leslyn and Sir Harold treated us in Big J Grill House. Jerome also arrived in the afternoon.

Our lunch at Big J Grill House: Grilled Fish and Chicken

After the second day of training, we went back to the hotel for a quick rest before dinner. The two-day training was a great training experience for Celine. She even say that it has been her best training (yet). We waited for Miss Leslyn and Sir Harold and we had dinner at Hukad Sa Golden Cowrie. We had so many food for dinner! After dinner, we ordered cakes at the Cofee Lounge: Rainbow Cake, Red Velvet Cake, Sinful Chocolate, Black Forest, Ube Cake.

Our dinner

Counterclokwise: Rainbow Cake, Red Velvet Cake, Ube Cake, Black Forest, Sinful Chocolate

The next day, the LSU service picked us up at the hotel. We went to Jollibee to take out breakfast and then went straight to the airport. The checking of baggages is being done manually so there is a long queue of people. Cebu Pacific checkin counter is also in the other building on the right. The next security check before going to the boarding room is also manual. There, we ate our breakfast while waiting for the plane.

Ozamiz is a small city and yet we weren't able to tour most of it. I'm hoping we can be back there to visit those places soon.