Food in France

I spent about 2 weeks traveling through France, stopping by Paris, Giverny, Mont St. Michel, Lyon, Nice, Eze, Villefranche Sur Mer, Rennes, Menton, and Cannes. Below is my rating of the various restaurants that I stopped by.

My rating system:

1 star: Horrible, wished I had never heard of the place

2 stars: Meh, I’m not going to recommend this since it’s not really worth going to

3 stars: Alright (Most of my restaurants will be rated with 3 stars)

4 stars: Pretty Good, I’d recommend to my friends

5 stars:  Magical, I would come back!

Restaurants:

Cannes-

NIVA Cannes: Gelateria that is supposedly comparable to the gelato stores of Italy

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Let me stop you right here. It isn’t as good of a gelato place as those in Italy. It’s maybe comparable to some of the okay gelato places in the U.S. Not worth your time basically.

Rating: 2 stars

Le Troquet a Soupes

Another restaurant in Cannes. It’s a good budget friendly place if you’re trying to get a quick meal before taking the night train. Don’t expect really good food though. Expect food that’s more like something your mom (the one that doesn’t really go all out for cooking) might make when she needs to quickly make food for you.

Rating: 3 stars

Price: 10-20 euros for a dish, cheap for Cannes

Dish to Order: I got the beef tartare which was okay. I hear their French Onion soup is pretty decent too.

Address: 64 Rue Meynadier

La Meissouniere

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So good. One of the best restaurants I’ve been to in France. You get a good amount of really good food for a very decent price, especially in Cannes. For lunch, I had a 3 course meal for only around 25 Euros. That’s really good. You’ll also see that there’s a lot of locals in the area, one of whom told me, “Everything is good here”.

Rating: 4 stars

Price: 25 Euros for 3 courses (an appetizer, main course, and a dessert)

Dish to Order: I got the Bone Marrow, which was amazing. Duck Breast, also pretty good. And for dessert, French Toast with ice cream, which was on their specials.

Address: 15 Rue du 24 Aout

Lyon-

Brasserie Georges

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A non-bouchon bistro in Lyon. It’s supposedly one of the oldest brasseries in Lyon, and it’s fine if you again, want a pretty decent meal but don’t really have the time. However, if you have the time and the money, I’d recommend going to one of the bouchons or Michelin star restaurants in the city. After all, you’re in Lyon, the quote unquote capital city for food around the world.

Rating: 3 stars

Price: 20 euros up, depending on what dish you get

Dish to Order: I got the steak tartare (if you’re noticing a trend, it’s because I love steak tartare). It’s a pretty good steak tartare and they prepare it for your table side which is kind of cool. They’re also known for their french onion soup apparently.

Address: 30 Cours de Verdun

Terre Adelice

Supposedly an amazing ice cream place sitting in Vieux Lyon (Old Lyon). In my opinion, I’ve had so much better ice cream elsewhere, that this is definitely not worth.

Rating: 2 stars

Daniel et Denise

One of the most famous bouchons in Lyon. This is where I realized that maybe Lyonnaise food or authentic French food might be too rich for me. The veal, the pate, the foie gras, the meats, it may not be something that is within my taste range. That being said, if you enjoy that stuff, Lyon and this specific bouchon is probably the city for you.

Rating: 3 stars

Price: 30 Euros and up depending on what you get

Dish to Order: Foie gras and Sweetbread pate en croute (Pate in a pastry case), fish dishes, and salads are supposedly known here. I have no idea though. Again, quite rich for me.

Address: 146 Rue de Crequi

Rennes-

Creperie Saint-Anne

A crepe place in Rennes. It’s simple and I wasn’t looking for much in this city. The crepe was decent and did it’s job.

Rating: 3 stars

Price: 12 euros for a crepe

Dish to Order: Any of the crepes should be fine, though I got the Mushroom, Cheese and Tomato one.

Address: 5 Place Sainte-Anne

Paris-

La Patisserie des Reves

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One of the most famous bakeries in Paris, known for their award winning brioche bread. Get their brioche bread. It’s also around the corner from Pierre Herme. So do it. It’s so worth.

Rating: 4 stars

Price; A bit pricey for a bakery, but so worth

Dish to Order: Any brioche bread

Address: 111 Rue de Longchamp

Boulangerie Alexine

Another famous bakery in Montmartre known for their award winning baguettes. Maybe it’s because I can’t really differentiate between the baguettes in France, but I feel like all the baguettes, including here, are pretty good and can’t tell if one is exceptionally good.

Rating: 3 stars

Price: Typical Parisian Bakery Prices

Dish to Order: Baguette

Address: 40 Rue Lepic

Le Grenier a Pains

Another famous bakery. But again, I can’t tell the difference.

Rating: 3 stars

Price: Typical Parisian Bakery Prices

Dish to Order: Baguette

Address: 38 Rue des Abbesses

Eric Kayser

Another famous bakery. There’s so many of them. Again, I can’t really tell the difference.

Rating: 3 stars

Price: Typical Parisian Bakery Prices

Dish to Order: Apparently all their pastries are pretty good.

Address: This is a chain so there’s lots of places around Paris. Here’s the address to one of them-14 Rue Monge

Chez Gladines

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So this is sort of an underrated place where I don’t think many tourists go as it’s out of the way of central Paris and other tourist spots. That being said, the trip is ohhhh so worth it. The duck confit is extremely flavorful and rich and their potatoes are so good, I wish I could bring a bag back home and eat it like a sack of chips (But they’re so much better than chips). Those potatoes though, the texture and everything is so good by itself, but as they sit in the duck confit juices and oil, it becomes that much better.

Rating: 4 stars

Dish to Order: Duck Confit but I also hear that the Escabeche is also well known (I’m just not a veal person).

Address: 30 Rue Des Cinq

Epicure

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3 star Michelin restaurant, and according to my research, the number 1 3 star Michelin restaurant in Paris on TripAdvisor. Before coming, I had very low expectations. I thought it would taste decent for sure, but having had 1 Michelin star food in the United States, I didn’t think the food would be worth the high prices. That being said, this was one of the best restaurants I’ve ever been to. I spent roughly 200 Euros, which is pretty good for a 3 star Michelin restaurant, especially in comparison to expensive American fine dining, but each Euro was oh so worth. Yes, the courses here are good, but it’s the extras that put this place over the top. The bread and butter is so good. They have different kinds of bread and the olive bread and seaweed bread was so beautiful. The butter (2 kinds-salted and unsalted) made such a wonderful flavor combination. On top of this, there’s also a cheese trolley (complete with figs, grapes, and nuts) and a dessert trolley (complete with all you can eat macarons, chocolates, and caramels).

Rating: 5 stars

Price: 200+ euros for 2 courses, all the extras I mentioned above, and a bottle of water.

Dish to Order: The langoustines-I still dream about those. I also tried the stuffed sole with mushrooms which was okay. But I’m sure anything here would be decent.

Address: 112 Rue du Faubourg

Pierre Herme

The designer macaron place that is meant to outdo Laudree in the minds of some Parisians. In my opinion, the reputation is well deserved.

Rating: 4 stars

Price: Pricey but so worth it

Dish to Order: Just go for which ever flavor calls to you

Address: 72 Rue Bonaparte

L’As du Fallafel

It’s a super famous falafel place in central Paris. I got the Shawarma plate but I thought it was just okay. But maybe that’s cause I didn’t try the falafel. The portions are huge though.

Rating: 3 stars

Price: 20+ Euros per Dish

Dish to Order: Falafel and Shawarma supposedly

Address: 32 Rue des Rosiers

Laduree

No words needed. You should go at least once to the store that first invented macarons.

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Rating: 4 stars

Price: Around 5 Euros per macaron

Dish to Order: The pistachio and raspberry are quite popular but as a personal preference, I like the coffee and vanilla.

Address: There’s a variety of locations throughout Paris but one of the locations is 75 Avenue des Champs-Elysees

Breizh Cafe

A very famous creperie also in central Paris. There’s a line. But you should wait it out. The crepes are indescribable. Light and so flavorful. There’s different kinds, but I got the bacon, cheese, and mushroom one. It’s so good. Also get their cidres, which are like hard apple cider but also somehow better. The dessert crepes are also a must have. We got the yuzu, sugar, and butter one. It was the perfect balance of sweetness so that it wouldn’t be too sweet.

Rating: 5 stars

Price: Roughly 15 Euros but so worth

Dish to Order: Everything

Address: 109 Rue Vieille du Temple

Nice-

L’Escalinada

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Oh my god was this place a mistake. I only went here because it was the only thing pretty much open on a late Monday night. And the food was so mediocre and overpriced for what it was. I could have cooked the pasta better than they did. The pasta in pesto was just pasta drowned in olive oil (I could literally see the pool of olive oil surrounding the pasta) with just a couple dabs of pesto on top. Never have I been so disappointed in a restaurant in France before. This place broke my stereotype that the worst restaurant in France would still be in the top 30% of restaurants in the United States. This also made me never trust in any Yelp-like online review systems ever again.

Rating: 1 star

Cafe de Turin

A restaurant known for seafood, it’s certainly well frequented by tourists. However, I’d skip it, as I feel the oysters are definitely better elsewhere and you time is better off spent eating at a better restaurant in Nice.

Rating: 2 stars

La Merenda

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Oh my god was this place so good. It was such a surprise how good fried squash blossoms and pasta in France could be. This was where I realized that the French Riviera could have such good Italian food (must be the proximity to Italy). But after L’Escalinada on retrospect, I think it’s just that this place is so good. A fair warning though, make a reservation or come right when it opens (even on weekdays). It’s that good.

Rating: 4 stars

Price: 20 euros and up

Dish to Order: Fried Squash Blossoms, Pasta. Oh who am I kidding, I’m pretty sure that everything here tastes good.

Address: 4 Rue Raoul Bosio

Chez Pipo

Another restaurant in Nice known for socca, a flat thin pancake type dish made of chickpeas. It’s a specialty of Nice, and supposedly this is the place to get it at. I think it’s worth trying once, but socca isn’t really my thing. I feel that it’s heavy and a bit flavorless, but that’s just my opinion. Or maybe this isn’t actually the place for it? I don’t know.

Rating: 3 stars

Price: 5 euros per socca dish

Dish to Order: I tried the classic socca and the other socca dishes with other vegetables added.

Address: 13 Rue Bavastro

Fenocchio

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Another ice cream place in France that’s supposedly really good. Except this time, it’s actually really good. I came here so many times it’s so good. So the server says that the fruity flavors are good but honestly both the fruity and creamy flavors are great.

Rating: 4 stars

Price: 2.5 Euros per scoop

Dish to Order: I really liked the Lychee and the Grapefruit, but the Cookies were also good (imagine eating chunks of Chocolate Chip Cookies). It’s all good. Try them all.

Address: There’s at least 3 different locations throughout Vieux Nice, but here’s one of them-2 Place Rossetti

Giverny-

Le Pain Couronne

A bakery near the Vernon train station. It’s unassuming, but I didn’t want to shell out money in this touristy city. So I went to get a ham and cheese sandwich. This place does the best simple fare sandwiches. I think it’s because of the very fresh butter that they slather onto the bed. Either way, it’s good for a quick bite on the way or back from Monet’s Garden.

Price: Less than 5 euros per sandwich

Dish to Order: Sandwiches, but I’m sure you could experiment with the other goods being sold

Address: 132 Rue d’Albufera

 

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The Happiness of Sunny Days

California is the sunny state and visitors come wearing t-shirts and shorts, expecting all day sunshine and a day of warmth on the beaches. However, this past month, the sky has been cloudy and gray. And it’s been pouring every day. Yes, great for the great drought of California. But throughout this past month, I’ve definitely felt down, moody, and emotional, to a degree that I’ve never really felt before.

This could be linked also with the emotional duress of new relationships, ennui, boredom with my job, etc. However, studies have definitely linked a correlation between lack of sun and emotional stress.

Of course, the rest of the country no doubt sees worse weather in terms of rain and snow. However, as a spoiled Californian native, I feel the need to complain.

These last couple of days have provided bits and pieces of sun. And to be honest, I feel me pulling myself back together, and just feeling all around happier.

I can wander around, dance naked on the beaches, bike the Golden Gate bridge, and just jump for joy (both literally and figuratively).

All in all, I’ve missed the sun, am glad it’s back, and hope it’s here to stay for good.

Too bad, there’s rain forecasted for the weekend.

Here’s to hoping for sunny days in your futures.

The Catch 22 of Choosing Between Passion and Stability

As a child, we’re expected, even encouraged, to have dreams about our future. This can be anything from president or astronaut, to dreams that seem even more farfetched, like wizard or cat. However, these dreams are looked at fondly by society. So we continued to draw crayon pictures of ourselves as future superheroes, no matter how ridiculous it seemed.

However, as we went through high school and university, it seemed that society had lied to us. In fact the adults that said our dreams were cute, began to say that they were ridiculous. We needed to find real jobs that paid real salaries. And of course, we could never earn six figure salaries or buy homes as a wizard.

To make things even more confusing, we take career tests and read blogs that tell us to become who we really are meant to be.

  • Follow your passions.
  • Money will follow.
  • Where do your real talents and interests lie?
  • You can definitely live that life.
  • Is life all about money?
  • There’s definitely more to life than material goods and stability.
  • You only live one life.
  • Life life to the fullest.

So we become boring and mundane if we pursue a life based on providing us with a stable life. But if we pursue a life of passion, doing what we want to do, we become ridiculous, making unwise decisions and mocked by society (but only if those passions fall outside of what society deems acceptable, like medicine or coding.

So what exactly are we supposed to do?

If only I knew…

On Beginning First Relationships

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I read Textbook, by Amy Krouse, and really liked this page, resulting in this badly taken photo.

But I’m not falling in love…not really. More like falling in like I guess, or maybe that’s what I deeply hope for. Because falling in love is something more. It implies that if the time comes to escape it, it becomes that much more difficult without damaging or losing a part of yourself. At least, that’s what I imagine.

Way back before, back when I was my own person and not in any sort of relationship, I saw my friends and my parents suffer through their own relationships. Sure, there were happy times, but I also saw the bloody aftermath in almost all those relationships. As a result, being the pretentious cocky person I am, I expected that I would never make any of those mistakes. And more importantly, I expected that I would never debase myself enough in relationships to find myself in the same amount of anxiety, “crazy”, and pain that I see others in. I would never emotionally open myself enough to make me so vulnerable and capable of feeling the immense pain and hurt I had seen. I have seen what can happen, and as a result, I should know better.

Recently though, I did insert myself into a relationship. My first one, in fact. And I thought I was emotionally stable enough. However, just a week in and I found myself being crazy. I don’t know what’s wrong with me because I’m never like this. But lately, I find myself thinking, maybe this is who I truly am deep inside. To be honest, I just don’t know.

I think about him 24/7, when I wake up, when I fall asleep, even in the middle of the night when I get woken by my roommate’s snoring. I check my messages about 100x more frequently than I ever did. I feel anxiety when he’s not responding immediately. I want him next to me all the time. I want to talk to him all the time. I compare our relationship to others and think we have it the best. I compare our relationship to others and wonder why he won’t talk to me more like my friend’s boyfriend does. I write extremely cheesy messages that previous me would have definitely thrown up at. I anxiously second guess myself and constantly wonder if I’m being too annoying or not. I read endless articles describing similar symptoms and what I should do and what I shouldn’t do. I need to stop with all this insanity.

Basically, to sum it all up, I’m going crazy and I can feel it. This rapid deterioration of my inner self-haven.

Logically, I know why I’m doing these things and that I should stop. Unfortunately, this doesn’t translate out to the real world.

And I’m afraid. Afraid that if this ends, I will be in pain and sadness, and I don’t want that.

But also and more importantly, I’m equally afraid that the strong, independent, and stoic me that was me before this mess began is disappearing. Or worse, that she never even existed and it was all just a front.

Things to Do in Singapore

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Singapore is a tiny city and many of its inhabitants (at least the ones I talk to) say there’s not much to do here. However, I find that it’s definitely a unique cityscape to walk through and explore when you have the time.

BooksActually

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I love exploring bookstores. And this place is small but quaint and charming. It’s filled with a wide variety of books, mostly falling under the quirky side. If you go in through to the back room, there’s an even larger amount of quirky books and goods to rummage through. If you have time after, definitely explore the surrounding Tiong Bahru area, as there are other cafes, shops, etc. with an equally hipstery vibe.

Ann Siang Road and Surrounding Areas

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This area is more known for bars and restaurants that serve food and drinks targeted more towards the expat community. But more importantly, the area is designed both in landscape and architecture in a way that makes for great photo spots. My amateur photography skills of course doesn’t do the area justice, but just trust me.

Chinatown

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Chinatown here, as in other cities/countries, is certainly a tourist trap. However, it’s definitely a place to walk through and check out, especially if you’re looking for those quintessential souvenirs, like a Singapore themed shot glass. Be sure to go into the Maxwell Hawker Centre here nearby as well as the Chinatown Food Court for some cheap hawker fare.

Chijmes

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Chijmes is a super beautiful place. People even hold weddings here. Basically, this place used to be a church/chapel, but ironically enough got redesigned to hold lots of classy bars inside instead.

Clarke Quay

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Clarke Quay is another one of those places in Singapore that you have to check out. Not only does the area have buildings and bridges gorgeously lit, like in the photo above, but it’s a classy little waterfront that’s perfect for walking by. It’s also the classic location for grabbing a meal and some drinks. Definitely come check out this place at night.

Haji Lane

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Haji Lane reminds me of the Mission area in San Francisco. It’s a cluster of alleyways with beautiful buildings and murals throughout it. There’s also a bunch of hipstery bars, cafes, restaurants, art galleries and shops to check out.

Esplanade, Merlion Statue, and that entire Area

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This is the tourist location that screams out Singapore to the world. There’s the classic merlion statue that everyone takes photos. But don’t forget to also check out the view of Marina Bay (the hotel building that looks like a boat on top of three columns) the Esplanade (a building in the shape of a durian, the national fruit of Singapore), and the other classic buildings on this Singapore cityscape view.

Marina Bay 

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The Marina Bay area is known for a couple things. First, the Gardens by the Bay, which…Google it…the Internet will tell you more about than I could ever tell you. But basically, Singapore is pretty proud of it. Second, Marina Bay Sands. It’s a hotel, but under it is a mall and a casino. The mall is pretty outlandish. As you can see above, there’s a freaking canal running through it that you can ride boats on.

Singapore Art Museum

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The Singapore Art Museum, is definitely nothing like the MOMA or the MET. However, it’s worth checking out if you have interest in modern art.

Other Places to Check Out for Which I Have No Photos

  1. Orchard Lane: It’s a strip of several malls all together, which consists of food courts, ice cream vendors, and everything else imaginable. There’s also a Laduree, and my favorite, a large Kinokuniya bookstore, where you can sit and read absolutely anything.
  2. Singapore Botanical Garden: It’s your classic botanical garden. To be honest, I only went because it was a world heritage site.
  3. Little India: Definitely an interesting stop to see the great cultural differences and an almost too palpable racial divide between the Chinese and Indian populations within the country. On another more superficial note, it’s also a good place to get your eyebrows done perfectly for a cheap price.
  4. Red Dot Museum: If you have time, and are interested in art/design (both industrial and print), check out this small museum. It’s actually pretty cool, and I’m not super design/art minded.

On Boredom

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It’s been several months since coming back from my summer escapades traveling through Asia. It’s been a blast freely going where I want, reconnecting with friends in foreign countries, and best of all, not having to deal with the stresses of the real world.

I’m in a completely place now. Back home in my city of San Francisco, working at a top tier management consulting firm for about 3.5 months. And I’ve definitely felt myself fall into a rut.

During my time in Shanghai, working as a summer camp counselor, I definitely felt myself more fulfilled. Sure, I earned less money doing what society considers a “lower tier” job compared to my current position. However, I worked roughly from 9-4 instructing and spending time with children, something I found very fulfilling. After work, I’d usually go out to explore the city. On the rare occasion, I would be tired and I’d have those homebody nights where I stayed in the dorm watching endless hours of Netflix.

Nevertheless, I was never bored. I always found myself mentally engaged with life and there I say it, having fun. It was the ideal life.

However, in my current job, I find myself staring at the computer screen, doing Excel, Powerpoint, and endless Google searches from 8am to 12am on the worst days. On the best days, I’d end up watching endless TV again, doing nothing of productive use. At nights and weekends, I occasionally go out with friends but when it comes down to it, I am again on Netflix, Facebook, Buzzfeed, or other time suck sites. Basically, I am sitting here, bored out of my mind.

Some might argue that life is what I make of it and that I should be pursuing other hobbies or other fun activities outside of work to make my life more fulfilling. However, the effects of being stuck in an unfulfilling career that nevertheless pays the bills and provides me with a roof over my head are spilling over into my life outside of work. I feel no motivation to actively do anything about because at times, I often feel the existential crisis of “What’s the point? I’m stuck in this boring job wasting away my youth like this?”

Here’s to trying to rouse up some dregs of motivation for living a more fulfilling life…

Travels in Boracay: On being lonely and independent

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Imagine smelling nothing in the air but the almost sweet spray of the ocean waves. The mainstream club music sounds from a distance. Somehow, it is fitting to the moment. And all you have is water, sand, and moonlight all around you. This is Boracay.

It certainly is a very touristy island, with almost all of the natives here working in some industry or other that goes solely towards serving the natives. However, the clear waters and lack of real civilization (no pesky cityscapes to ruin those glorious ocean views) makes it a worthwhile island to venture out to at least once in a lifetime.

Boracay, for those who don’t know, is a small island, about 4 miles by 2 miles in its entirety. It’s a pretty underdeveloped tourist destination as there’s only 1 McDonalds on the island. As you travel around, you will also notice several plots of land roped off to construct fancy hotels. It’s definitely getting there though. It’s also an island that has been ranked in the top 10 go-to beaches around the world.

After a draining but definitely interesting month of running around after children and with my deep love for beaches, I did much research and decided to travel to Boracay. Three things inspired me to choose Boracay.

  1. Famous for beautiful beaches
  2. Considered a cheaper option since it was in the Philippines, an underdeveloped tourist destination, and was during off-season
  3. Touted as the Asian cheaper version of Cancun

My Boracay trip lasted for 4 days. For 3 of those days, I stayed in a very cheap hostel, Jeepney, which cost only about $18 for 3 nights. It was what you’d expect of a hostel with very friendly staff. However, my complaints would be that there’s poor ventilation/air conditioning, leading to pretty warm nights, and the existence of mosquitoes. Though honestly, these complaints are probably more related to Southeast Asia in general, and so something you should come to expect.

For my last day, I booked a night at a 5 star hotel. Not quite the Shangri-La, but at the Monaco Suites de Boracay. Because it was off-season, I only paid about $175 (I also got a discount through Orbitz). This is probably cheaper than the nightly price for a 3 star hotel in the States. I also received an Ocean View Suite, which consisted of a bedroom, two bathrooms, a fully equipped kitchen, living room, and a patio that overlooked the ocean. It was heavenly and the perfect end to my travels on the island. The service you receive from beginning to end is also great, from the glass of apple lemonade and the cool towel you receive upon check in to the golf cart ride from the entrance to the reception area to your suite and to the shuttle rides to the airport/D*Mall, makes you feel pampered. If you get the chance to stay here, be sure to also check out the infinity pool and jacuzzi.

The downsides to this hotel was that while Monaco Suites surpassed my every expectation in the way of what a 5 star hotel provides, the small details surprised me, and were of course, almost insignificant elements, but did create breaks in the illusion that you had arrived in paradise. For example, the room service menu had broken pages, the television didn’t have any working channels, etc. And while the breakfast buffet was pretty decent, the room service meal (I got a pesto sandwich) was dry and tasteless. That being said though, I have yet to get a room service meal that was actually tasty at any hotel.

That night at Monaco Suites, I took a swim out in the infinity pool. Upon walking there and seeing the lighted pool in the moonlight, My first thought was that this was the best thing ever. My second thought was, ‘Oh shoot…There’s exactly one honeymooning couple here…and they’re honeymooning away…You know what…whatever. This is a public pool.’ So I just strode in and took a dip in the pool. The couple waited a bit for me to leave, but upon seeing I wasn’t going to leave anytime soon, they left. And you know what? I don’t regret chasing away this one couple with my presence.

It made me contemplate not only this trip but also my previous trips as a solo female backpacker.

The independence you feel on landing in a completely foreign country, one where you may not even speak the language, completely by yourself is a rush that I can’t even begin to describe. Being able to walk around, seeing what you want to see, eating what you want to eat, and doing what you want to do, without a care in the world for other people, is thrilling. It provides you with a sense of freedom. No more holding yourself back just because you know your friend or your mother wouldn’t want to do that. A shady but cool looking alleyway over there? Just go. No one is there to yell at or chastise you.

And when people ask you, from shady men to families to couples, “Are you here alone,” and you respond yes, depending on the situation” the look of astonishment they get is the icing on the cake. It’s a look that mixes the two thoughts of “Wow!” and “You crazy bitch!” and it’s great. As I lay on my back in that infinity pool that night, I watched a thunder/lightning storm not quite far from me and really relished my independence.

However, this independence also lends its way to feelings of loneliness and it’s inevitable. Most of the time, it’s overcome by feelings of awe and glee at traveling alone and seeing/experiencing new things. However, this feeling of loneliness sometimes creeps up on you unknowingly. In Boracay for example, 75% of the people there were couples (This number is my own hyperbolic estimate of course) and walking around, doing the activities meant for couple by myself, from “commonplace” things like eating to the more exciting things like sailing, inevitably makes you feel alone. Hearing another honeymooning having a late night dinner to songs like John Legend’s “All of Me” in the restaurant patio above the pool  only accentuates the feeling.

It sort of feels like a pang in your heart and you start wishing for a boyfriend, a friend, anyone. You start looking at the male tourists and thinking that maybe we could have a thing in your twisted fantasy land. You feel envious of the couples.

You feel alone.

In the end though, I believe that you come to engulf the loneliness within you and become stronger for it.