Bloggers @ The Philippine Science Centrum

In celebration of International Museum Day, the Philippine Science Centrum opened its door to bloggers last May 16, 2009. Not only was I able to go enjoy the country's first science museum for free but I was also able to bring my husband and blogging son with me.

Bloggers @ PSC (Philippine Science Centrum) aimed to spread the word about this awesome place to more people especially those in the cyber world. Well, that's what bloggers do best, don't we?

My family were the first ones to arrive in PSC. We had a smooth ride coming from Cainta to the Marikina Riverbanks. I'm glad that we did not have the usual weekend Marcos Highway traffic. Finding the E-Com building where PSC is housed did not become a problem at all because of the numerous road signs pointing to the Philippine Science Centrum. Instead of parking our car directly in front of the Riverbanks Mall where the parking rate is on a per hour basis, we went to the covered parking area at the back of the mall. It turned out to be the parking area nearest to the PSC entrance.

After registration, we were led to an area where our heads were chopped off and served on a fruit platter. No, just kidding. If my head was chopped off, I wouldn't be writing this post,right? The head on a platter table was just part of the Vision and Perception exhibit that demonstrates how mirrors can cheat our perception of what's real or not.

The PSC staff led by Ms. Edicel Herrera and Cognition Creative peeps Patrick and Lalah prepared a guided tour for us bloggers.

We were first led to the Finger Tingler exhibit that showed how our hands can act as a closed circuit where electricity can flow. Being the videographer (aherm), I had a good excuse of not being included in the circle where my boys and the other bloggers held hands and let the electricity flow through them. (Please see the video at the end of this post.)

Next, we were able to see ourselves move in zero gravity by using the Anti-Gravity Mirror. It's not magic that made us levitate, just pure science!

After that, we played with the Laser Harp. This harp is not like the usual harp because there are no strings to pluck to create music. Laser sensors send signals to the harp's microchip to play the corresponding note.

Body Beat is another musical exhibit. Two or more persons touch the metal balls and then tap the skin of each other to make music. Boy, this really made these men feel like little boys again!

I had the chance to be in the spotlight because the Van de Graaff Generator needed a volunteer with long hair. It looked scary at first because I thought that I would be feeling an electric current run through my hands in the process. It was literally a hair-raising experience!

Before we went on to the Space Gallery, we passed by the Children's Gallery where little kids can stay and play for a while.

The Space Gallery had the interesting exhibit called "Your Weight On Other Planets". It was a funny relief to know that I would weigh a lot less in other planets! Ralph also had the surprise of his life when he discovered that he would be as light as a feather in Pluto!

There was also an exhibit that showed a model of the Solar System. Visitors can view the facts and other interesting information about each planet by viewing them from monitors available below the model.

My boys enjoyed staying inside the Wonder House while it made me feel a little nauseous. The house was apparently tilted by 18 degrees but in there, I didn't even notice it in terms of what I saw as everything looked upright. I just had this sensation of falling! This exhibit definitely tested my sense of balance.

Talk and Listen enabled me and my Big Boy to talk to each other even when we were a few meters apart. The sound was so clear even when he just whispered what he said to me.

Ralph rode a bike with Kelly the Skeleton in the Watch Me Pedal Exibit. Through Kelly, we were able to see how our bones move while biking.

We also had a great time making shadows at the Frozen Shadow and Colored Shadow exhibits. Look at how Ralph bonded with the other guys in our group.

We also saw how the Tesla Coil generated lightning arcs.

An open forum was held afterward inside the Conference Room. There, we were able to ask questions and discovered more of PSC's programs one of which is the Traveling Exhibition. The Traveling Exhibition brings at least forty interactive exhibits from the PSC to schools or town halls even in far-flung areas of the country. There are 4 available sets of Traveling Exhibits. These are the Adventures in Discovery, Sci-Fun Caravan, Science on the Move, and Science Works.

We truly had a great time at the Philippine Science Centrum. It was my first time to be actually inside the country's first interactive science museum although I already had glimpses of it when they were still in the UP Manila campus. The building where they were a few years back was the same building where our PE classes were held.

For us, visiting the Philippine Science Centrum is considerably a great alternative to going to the SM Science Discovery Center. Tickets are cheaper by a mile at a hundred bucks each. The place is also just a few minutes away from our home. However, please be advised that the place has no airconditioning and the exhibits are not that high-tech as SM's but, nevertheless, still as interactive. After visiting the PSC, you can take a stroll and enjoy the cool breeze at the Marikina Riverbanks or have a shopping spree at the Riverbanks Mall.

You can view this short video to have a better idea of our awesome tour of the Philippine Science Centrum:

The Philippine Science Centrum is located at the E-Com Building, Riverbanks Center, Barangka, Marikina City. It is open from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 Monday to Saturday. For more information, you can visit their website. Below is a vicinity map for your convenience.

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SM Hypermarket Mandaluyong

Mandaluyong welcomes another SM establishment in its city. SM Hypermarket Mandaluyong was finally opened to the public last May 15, 2009 (Friday) but me and the mole on my sole were fortunate to get an invite for the blessing of the place a day before.

The place where SM Hypermarket Mandaluyong stands now is very familiar to me. I studied in UP Manila in college and from the Pasig Market I would take a jeep and would get off at the corner of Kalentong. In the exact spot where SM Hypermarket is at present was an ice manufacturing company as far as I can remember. A few years after that, I remember a time when I registered our Honda City in that same place. There was an old one-story establishment where the LTO-Mandaluyong temporarily held office. After a few years, a Makro store was erected there. Now, that Makro store was converted into SM Hypermarket Mandaluyong.

A hypermarket is a superstore -- a supermarket and department store combined. True to its claim of being so, SM Hypermarket carries a wide array of products under one roof so a shopper's trip becomes conveniently confined to one place.

I attended the event with Ralph in tow as I fetched him from his music class in Robinson's Galleria. The mass had just started when we arrived. After that, the usual inaugural rites was led by the priest. Mr. Henry Sy Sr. and Mayor Benhur Abalos were present to witness the event. Other celebrities like Jodie Sta. Maria, Empress Schuck, Marian Rivera, and Kim Chiu also graced the affair.

This branch is relatively smaller compared to SM Hypermarket Pasig. Still, SM Hypermarket Mandaluyong has a shopper's basic needs covered. Aside from the wet and dry goods, the establishment also carries school and office supplies and hardware essentials. It also has a small food court that will definitely be crowded once school starts because Jose Rizal University is just across the street. It also has a Forex and Bills Payment Center

SM Hypermarket Mandaluyong is located at Shaw Boulevard corner E. Magalona St. Mandaluyong City. Pasig-Quiapo bound FX and jeepneys pass by the place. Here's a map for your reference:

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Rai-Rai Ken Ramen and Sushi Bar, SM Taytay

Rai-Rai Ken Ramen and Sushi Bar has recently opened its latest branch in SM Taytay. We decided to give it a try last week as my boys craved for seafood and Japanese.

The ambiance of the place was warm, yet, modernly Japanese. The wall was decorated with interesting scenes of both Japanese traditional and pop culture. One scene that fascinated us was this...

Aside from getting each of us a bowl of Gohan (Japanese rice) and hearty Miso Soup, we also asked for these:

Shrimp Tempura

Breaded Salmon Balls, Squid, Crabsticks, and Shrimps

Japanese Pork Dumplings

My husband and I shared a pot of hot green tea that we badly needed to warm ourselves up a little and Ralph had a glass of Four Seasons. My son had a great time because he was finally successful in using a pair of chopsticks during the entire course of our dinner!

Service was fast that night but I attributed it to the fact that we came in a little bit early for dinner. Price-wise, it was generally affordable considering that it's not Japanese fast food. We could have spent the same amount if we chose to dine in the Japanese fast food restaurant in the other building of the mall. One turn-off though was that I had to ask our dishes to be replaced before we finally ate because they were dusty. I have this habit of wiping the dishes and utensils first before we eat. They should be thankful that they yummy food saved the day for them. Although almost everything we had was fried, they were not greasy at all. The presentation of the food, as you can see, made it more appetizing.

Rai-Rai Ken Ramen and Sushi Bar SM Taytay can be found in the ground floor of the building where Ace Hardware and SM Hypermart is. It is in between SM Hypermart and Chowking. SM Taytay is along Manila East Road, Taytay, Rizal just a few meters before you reach Club Manila East from Ortigas Extension.

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