Been euphoric the past few days because I’ve had bonding sessions with a person dear to me. I consider Eileen one of my ‘bestest’ friends but unfortunately I only get to see her every few years since she’s now based in the US with her
good-looking pilot husband. So when she flew into town, she gave me the nicest compliment: “A, you’ve never looked so good. What’s your secret?” To which I replied: ” You’ve never aged yourself. I hope I can still look as good as you when am already 44!”
Each one of us should have the privilege of having a friend who will make us feel good by simply looking back and there are too many precious memories I’ve shared with this girl. I fondly recall all those sleep-overs at her pad in Malate, disco-dancing back when Sybil’s “Make It Easy On Me” was still in vogue, camping out & skinny-dipping in Subic, boys-talk, dinners out etc. A good friend for me will not judge even when you’ve spilled out your secrets and it helps that Eileen and I think on the same plane in terms of our liberal views. She is also super-thoughtful and never has any vices, except travelling.
Her observations about Manila were quite interesting. ” It’s cleaner now and there’s less traffic. But the food here is expensive, even more expensive than in the US!” To which I say, Amen.
Today, we hang out with a common friend and fellow supermom Mylene who will be settling in upscale Marina Baytown. While driving on the way, we chanced upon Seaside Macapagal Blvd. and then I remembered that Anton had written about this before. The place looked so inviting that we lost no time in going there and it’s here where we had a most fabulous dinner.
Seaside Macapagal takes on the Filipino concept of “dampa” in cleaner and much better surroundings. It’s composed of individual establishments in one complex where you are supposed to shop for fresh seafood in the wet market then have it weighed and cooked in the adjoining restaurant. You can choose to dine indoors or al fresco, while listening to a musical band. In the evenings, the landscaped gardens can be a romantic setting for your dinner date, if only those families out with their kids weren’t too noisy (ugh!).
In the fresh market, you can have all the seafood your heart desires like lapu-lapu, maya-maya, salmon, tuna, scallops, squid, bivalves and the like. Meat and vegetables are also sold in neighboring stalls.
We settled at Robbie’s and ordered for deep-fried crabs, baked mussels in garlic and cheese, fresh oysters, grilled panga ng tuna and sauteed spinach. Our total expenses for buying all the food and having it cooked as well as the drinks amounted to almost P2,000 (less than $40) for four persons. Best of all, we still had some left-overs to take home. This is definitely cheaper than if we had dined in a hotel.
Seaside Macapagal Blvd. (near the CCP Complex) is highly recommended for those family get-togethers and giving your balikbayan/foreigner friends the fresh seafood market experience. No wonder, the place is always full!