Summer in Manila is scorching. Prickly heat, severe sweating and rushing from AC to AC (establishments not rooms) characterize the dawn of April heat. It doesn’t help that my Instagram feed is full of folks from New York and Europe all seemingly still wrapped in heaps of layers. You either love the tropics or you hate it – it’s fairly seasonal.

I know in my heart I should be lounging by pools day in and day out but pools don’t always present themselves to me. And let’s not get started on the island girls I follow on social media. Their posts are all of bikinis and after a while you start to feel sorry for your beach-less, computer-fixated life. I know I do. Ironically, I was in a pool over the weekend but it was for a shoot and it was empty and devoid of both water to splash around in and the intoxicating smell of chlorine.

So here I am reminiscing the second to the last layout from our Rags 2 Riches Viaje lookbook shoot with my homegirl Danika who by now can seem like my lesbian lover especially in our Fault In Our Stars-style shot (see last photo). Alas, neither of us is willing to be Ansel Elgort and only the Shailene to his knight in shining armor. Or boy-next-door. Whatever, I didn’t read the book nor watch the movie. Sad story lines are not my cup of tea.

Fun times though. Dipping our legs in the coldest of waters, sipping tangy orange juice and beating the heat with giggles; Not a bad way to kick off summer.

Photography by ShutterPanda
Makeup by Lea Ancheta
Styled by Bea Constantino