United We Stand: The QRS Department Christmas Party 2012

Theme: United Nations
Venue: CAMPE Cabana, Marimar Village ParaƱaque City
Date: December 20, 2012

The Nations:
Executive - Republic of the Philippines
Test QRSE - United States of America
Internal Quality/Quality Programs - Mexico
Plating Laboratory - Korea
Statistical Process Control - Japan
Customer Quality Engineering - Egypt
Incoming Product Quality Assurance - Greece
Assembly QRSE - Spain
Ma'am Con - Thailand
Ma'am Dons - India

The winners:
Best in Costume Group Category - Japan
Best in Costume Female Category - Japan
Best in Costume Male Category  - Greece
Best in Talent - USA

Zambales Trip: The Cast, The Budget and The Mishap

The Cast
Mitch - She - Jen - Agnes - Ate Lei - Donna - Kat - Kiboy - Me

The Budget
For this trip, we only spent 2,000 pesos each.  It is inclusive of the van rental, gas, toll fees, food during the entire trip (1 dinner, 1 breakfast, 1 lunch), boat rental, island entrance fee, beach house ni dok accommodation and fare going home.

The Mishap
We rented a van so we won't have to worry about catching the bus, unnecessary stopovers and anything that might delay our trip to and from Zambales.  However, on the day of our trip, it seems that the van rental company had forgotten that we had reserved a van.  Upon calling them a lot of times, they sent a van (which, according to their story, was borrowed from a friend who also has a van rental business) to pick us up.  Well, from there it looks like they are professional enough to even borrow a van for us.  However, the problem came when upon arrival at Beach House ni Dok, the driver said he has to go back to Manila since he has other prior commitments.  Can we do anything? The company said they'll send the van reserved for us to pick us up the next day.  But the next day came and we were in dire need to go home but again, the van company had forgotten that we were actually waiting for them.  Needless to say, we ended up commuting on our way home.

The cast at the bus terminal
Note:  I do not wish to disclose the van rental company because negative publicity is still publicity.

Previous: In and Around Potipot Island

Zambales Trip: In and Around Potipot Island

Upon arrival at the island, you will have to pay 100 pesos if you're on day tour but if you'll stay overnight, you have to pay 300 pesos.

Note: If you plan to stay overnight, you have to bring your own tent as there is no room/accommodation on the island.

A dead tree
The powdery sand of Potipot Island

A horse? Of course not.
One of the very few cottages that can be found in the island
The fine weather when we got there - lovely!
After enjoying the do-it-ourselves sand spa, we decided to check the island out.  Walking around the island will take around 20-30 minutes.  But I think it took us twice (or more) as much since we had a lot of stops - apparently, for the seemingly endless picture-taking :)

Walking under the heat of the sun
Picture ng buhay isla :)
Posing with the water pump
Kiboy with the tree house
The girls on the dead tree
And yet another stop for a group shot
Previous: Enjoying the Water and Sand of Potipot Island
Up Next: The Cast, The Budget and The Mishap

Zambales Trip: Enjoying the Water and Sand of Potipot Island

The water - not crystal clear but very refreshing.
Agnes - Me - Ate Lei
Kat - Me - She - Jen
Me and Kiboy
Kiboy, Me and the unknown :)
When we got tired of swimming (on the shallow side of the island), we turned to the sand!  Free-spa: awesome!  Though not white, the sand is powdery and is not that hot even under the sun (or so I thought! hmp)

Zambales Trip: The Ride to Potipot Island

Beach house ni Dok also offers boat rental to Potipot Island for 500 pesos.  Each boat can carry a maximum of 8 persons and the boatman.  Since we were 9 in the group, instead of haggling the price, we convinced Kuyang Bangkero that we'll rent one boat instead of two.

Note: Do this at your own risk.  Do not do this if most of you are big as it would be very risky.  We promise not to do that again...Promise.

The boat rate already includes the life vest for each person.

Gearing up for the island trip
Kuya Bangkero explains how to wear the vest
all set :)

Potipot Island sa di kalayuan
at the island
The ride to the island was pretty cool.  It wasn't hot since we went there early in the morning and the waves weren't big.  The ride going back is a different story though.  The waves were splashing on us and it was raining.  It was supposed to be scary but I think, the afternoon ride going back to the beach house is more enjoyable :)

Beach House ni Dok
Up Next: Enjoying the Water and Sand of Potipot Island

Zambales Trip: Beach House ni Dok

We stayed at Beach House ni Dok when we went to Potipot Island last May 19, 2012.  Well, it's not the best resort (at least based on the reviews I saw on other blogs) but we still decided to stay here since it's the cheapest that we saw (and an officemate had recommended it).

We had reserved two rooms: the couple's room for me and hubby and a room good for 7 people.   The couple's room is rather small - it merely fits a single bed and the bathroom is really a mess.  The room as a whole was not well maintained and the smell -  oh so - never mind.  The other room on the other hand had two beds. Though both are big, I don't think they are enough for 6-8 people (as was described in their blog and facebook account).  Nonetheless, we managed to fit ourselves in and  get some rest.  The resort itself though is nice - especially for picture-taking :)  The good thing is, the staffs were really nice and I guesss that compensates for the room :)
Highway side: signage
The Groto
Inside the beach house
The carabao inspired cottage
beach side
Looking at Potipot Island from Beach House ni Dok
Beach side: entrance to beach house; upon entering, you will see
 the reception and the dining area
With Manang, the receptionist :)
Bed#2 of the group room
Picture-taking on Bed#1 of the group room
Outside the Couple's Room
They also offer meals for 200 pesos per person.  The price is inclusive of three viands, rice and fruit dessert.  Ours were inihaw na bangus, sinigang na baboy, meatballs, rice and mangga.  The servings were really big and the food - great.

Lesson learned: Shoot first before eating :)

Up Next: The Ride to Potipot Island