Tracy is a twenty-something
red-headed lady from the Philippines who lives for photography, and takes photos for a living.

Tracy in Polaroids is a blog that documents some of the goings-on in Tracy's life, providing snapshots into her own little universe.

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Anonymous asked: Ms. Tracy, I took the TDT yesterday. I'm feeling scared, I do not know If I have given my best. Now, I am trembling in fear that I might not pass. What am I gonna do? -De'intern, Demitri Ivanova

As long as you feel that you did everything to the best of your abilities, then there really isn’t anything more you can do but sit and wait. But if you don’t pass, make sure that you have a back up plan, i.e. another course or another school you can attend before you try again next year.

Anonymous asked: Hello Ms. Tracy! I was wondering, do you wanna build a snowman?

C’mon, let’s go and play!

San Francisco 2014 – March 6

March 6th was a pretty eventful day! Watch out, long post ahead!

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Our second hotel was this place called the Herbert Hotel. We didn’t really have the amenities like a mini fridge back in Hotel Tomo! in Japantown, so the food we bought the night before couldn’t be of the must refrigerate kind. Hello cereal and Rice Krispies Treats!

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Our boots by the red door.

The hotel seemed to be an old building from like the 50s or something, and just repainted and stuff to look like new again. The hallways were white walls lined with red doors. You even lock your room with an actual key!

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Spent the first night putting together this tiny Millennium Falcon (with a Lego Han Solo!) that Kiks gave me!

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Lunch at the nearby hole-in-the-wall-ish place called Bangkok that Kiks has been wanting to try! Noodles everywhere!

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Our dessert was in another part of the city. Karl suggested I try Smitten Ice Cream. The place was really small and cute! Check out the flavors, too, on the menu behind Kiks. Mmm.

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Girl with purple hair!

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They’re making my ice cream! If you’re familiar with The Iscreamist in the Maginhawa area in Teacher’s Village (if you’re from Manila!), this place apparently is quite similar. Except they have a patented machine that mixes the liquid nitrogen to make the ice cream! So cool!

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The girl with purple hair again! With a yellow backpack!

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Classic vanilla for both of us, but mine is with brown sugar caramel, and Kiks’s had rose syrup. Both were pretty good. :)

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We saw this group of (I’m assuming) high school girls, and I noticed that they all had purple or pink articles of clothing of similar shades. Is that a thing? Not judging! Just interesting.

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We hung out at the park across the street. I really wish we could do that all the time. Ice cream in the park on a beautiful San Francisco day.

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I seriously did a lot of walking in San Francisco.

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We went to this coffee shop close to their place that I learned about from sir Dan Matutina (I call him “sir” because he was teacher back in my college) called Sight Glass Coffee! It’s a fantastic place.

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Coffee tasting!

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Guy with blue hair!

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Random reflection photo while waiting for the bus. <3

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It’s just another day in CCA. One of Kiks’s table mates Lynn didn’t want me to take her picture, so…this happened.

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Pretty jacket of another table mate! I think this was Summer’s?

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While Kiks was in class for a few hours, I sat at his desk and worked on…a photo book!

Yes, I’m making a photo book! One of my relatives told me that we were a lucky bunch of kids, because we had photo albums to look back on as we get older, and that the generation today is all digital and doesn’t have those. Well, I’m bringing together a lot of things I love to turn that around—photography, print, travel, and of course, my über handsome boyfriend. We talked about it, and we’d make photo books of our trips abroad together. And this will be the very first one. I’m excited for it!

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We headed back to the apartment once again since it was on the way from school to our next destination. A few of his packages arrived, and as you can see, he couldn’t be happier with his Zildjian cap (the drummer in him lives!) and his new Ultraman figure. Haha!

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We went to the Academy of Sciences that night! They apparently have this social night thing every Thursday, so there were drinks, dancing, etc. while the museum was open to just adults. Pretty sweet!

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We spent majority of our time in the aquarium part, because fish! Kiks knows I love aquariums. We just stared at all the pretty fish.

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GIANT CATFISH!

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While I was taking this photo, I suddenly remembered our friends back in Manila. Missed them loads!

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At first there was just one of these guys when Kiks and I were staring at them. Suddenly his friend comes out and Kiks and I, being the Disney kids we are, exclaimed with eyes wide, “IT’S FLOTSAM AND JETSAM!”

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JELLIES! Jellyfish are always my favorite animals to see in aquariums. They’re so mesmerizing and beautiful. I remember my business card for my thesis exhibit back in college made use of my photos of jellyfish from the aquarium that I rebranded. Jellies!

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Shark embryo. Couldn’t get a better angle due to the way it was hung + light position!

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Upside down jellyfish! That was literally what they were called. :)) So cute! It reminds me of a turtle that got stuck on its back.

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After we heard the announcement that the academy was closing in 15 minutes, Kiks grabbed my hand and quickly took me up to the roof to check out the weird Mario hills and the stars. Perfect end. :)

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On the way to the exit, we managed to see the albino alligator! Crocodile? I forget. It was bizarre! It looked like a statue made of plaster!

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In the souvenir shop was a yellow snake named Lemondrop! I immediately hissed at it, “Naginiiiiii!”

It was a cold night that evening. We stood outside the doors under a lamp figuring out our route back to our hotel. Suddenly, we were approached by this guy who shiftily asks, “You guys got any weed?” HAHAHAHA I guess you’re bound to encounter something like that eventually in San Francisco. We said no dismissively, but he seemed to insist we did. We told him “no” with a louder hint of “go away”. HAHAHA. Such fond memories of this trip.

Because when are there not enough pictures of dogs on the internet?

Because when are there not enough pictures of dogs on the internet?

inkycherie asked: I really love your blog, Tracy (always have), and your San Francisco posts are definitely my favorites! Hope to read more about your SF adventures :)

Hi Inky! Really appreciate the kind words. :) They’re my favorites too! I haven’t gotten to posting the next ones due to work, but hopefully I get to post a new one soon! :)

San Francisco 2014 – March 5 (9th anniversary!)

Ah, the one day in the year that I look forward to the most!

The whole point of this trip to San Francisco was actually to spend our anniversary together, hence the awkward timing, given the academic calendar. (I teach in Ateneo, so I my students delighted in the free cut for one week. Coincidentally, on of our classes would had fallen on this anniversary!)

I went through my birthday, Christmas, New Years, and Valentine’s day alone, but I refuse to let our anniversary slip by without seeing this boy. So yes, I basically flew across the Pacific just for this.

We had an early start to the day. We missed the bus, so we just decided to walk all the way to his school. It was thankfully not too far away from his apartment, and the weather seemed to cooperate. Breakfast at Starbucks! I introduced Kiks to my new favorite drink the Caramel Flan frappuccino. I got a chocolate caramel muffin, too!

Upon arriving at his school, I found these on his desk! He had apparently set it up the day before. A box of truffles, some orchids growing out of Darth Vader’s head, and a drawing of stressed little Kiks, aww. Sweetest!

After thanking him for the little gifts, I took in his work area a bit more. …it was just like his desk back home. Filled with toys. What amused me the most was the red Power Ranger riding on the wooden laser-cut T-Rex. Haha!

I inserted myself into his desk clutter.

He put on a bow tie. I thought it was just to be cute, since it was our anniversary an all, but apparently it was because he had a presentation that day. Despite his efforts to keep me from sitting in and watching, his classmates invited me to come anyway, so haha! I didn’t want to be inappropriate and seem like a stage-girlfriend by taking his pictures during his presentation (though a leaf shutter like on the Fuji X100/X100S would have helped, LOL), so I just sat and watched. And silently took a photo with my phone instead. HAHAHA. Can I just say, that bow tie did wonders for him.

Waiting at the bus stop. I never thought I’d see the day that Kiks would be wearing red pants. Also, the matching colors were unintended.

While walking along the streets in the Union Square area, I noticed Kiks wasn’t next to me anymore. I looked back and saw him buying this from a lady on the street. The anniversary is never complete without his signature orange roses. :)

We checked out Urban Outfitters that afternoon. Photo booth! Also, I found the Humans of New York book!! Instant purchase. While I’m sure that the amount of photos I have of different people can probably be also turned into a book, they are nowhere near the level of Brandon Stanton’s photos. Because I prefer to be stealthy and ninja-like, not talking to people. Haha.

Dinner happened at The Cheesecake Factory! We were a little disappointed that it was nothing like what we watch on The Big Bang Theory. Hahaha! But anyway, I was my usual self and had breakfast food for dinner! ALL DAT FOOD.

We also had some cheesecake (because you have to have cheesecake at a place called The Cheesecake Factory), but I am slightly ashamed that I didn’t really bother to take a blog-worthy photo of it. Anniversary mode, I am more concentrated on eating food that taking pictures of them!

After settling the bill, we went out onto the terrace for a bit and took in the view of Union Square. And made like your typical couple, and took pictures of ourselves before heading down.

We ended the evening with a visit to the Walgreens right beside our hotel (in front of Uniqlo!) to get some snacks and lots of water.

At the risk of sounding overly cheesy, we hardly felt like we were in San Francisco when we were together. Suddenly, nothing felt or seemed foreign at all. Not the people, not the places we went to, not even the money we spent.

I guess that’s the very essence of just enjoying each other’s company, no matter how or where it’s spent. Everything just feels right, and you aren’t bothered by how cold it is, or how far away from home you actually are. Because in the most honest way that you feel and understand, you are home.

San Francisco 2014 – March 4

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In my uncle’s place in Daly City, all I do is just watch Sherlock on Netflix. I also had a bit of work to do for Tender Blender—vacation? What vacation?—which is why my laptop was out.

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The wait for the bus that morning was unusually long. Just my luck, the buses ran late on my one day to myself. I think I stood on that street corner for a good 30 minutes.

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Yet another late breakfast at the same Starbucks, because I failed to find the bakery I wanted to check out. Google Maps, you failed me! But ah well, I got an iced Caramel Flan latte this time. Mmm.

I spent a good amount of time sitting there by the window, taking pictures of people who passed by. My camera was just sitting there, pointing at the street, and I’d press the shutter button whenever people passed by. I have a ton of photos from that one sitting, and I do believe they deserve their own post. But here are a few of my favorites!

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I’m supposing this guy was attempting a photo bomb, but he instead gave me a great photo!

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That mustache!

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This guy reminds me of Nick Miller from New Girl. Must be the face he’s making, haha!

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For some reason, when I hear “San Francisco”, I picture guys that look just like this. (I used to think of guys in suits when I hear “New York”, but that kind of changed when I actually visited NYC.)

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After a lot of roaming around (I wanted to visit MoMA, but it was apparently closed for renovations! For a couple of years! Again, just my luck), I found myself in yet another Starbucks, mostly to leech off their free(!) wifi so I could decide where to go next.

I did another round of let’s-sit-by-the-window-and-take-pictures-of-people-passing-by while deciding on where to go.

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I liked this guy’s smile as he walked by.

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A short while after, I was back on the street, waiting for the bus. I was tempted to run across the street when I saw this store, but I was afraid I’d miss the bus, because I am oh so lucky.

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I figured I’d make like a tourist and look for the well known landmarks in the city, so I made my way to the financial district to marvel at the Transamerica Pyramid.

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There was this park where I had wanted to go up and possibly take pictures of the people in it, but there were all grumpy looking old Chinese men and women and some children. I was a little afraid that they might get mad at me for taking their pictures, sooo this is all I got. The kids were adorable, though!

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Found my way to the foot of the pyramid and chuckled to myself at the pyramid-shaped greenery.

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Being the lucky lass that I am, the bus took forever once again, so I said Screw it! and decided to just walk.

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I love San Francisco, because it’s so easy to get from one place to another, unlike here in the Philippines. Public transportation is horrible here (I hear MRT woes every single day!), and it’s too hot to walk very far. Not to mention the country’s disregard for the importance of sidewalks. And the awful drivers. And the random people running across the street when they shouldn’t. Ugh, makes my head hurt every time I think about it.

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Look at the girl’s cute shoes!

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Such stealthy. Very ninja.

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The interesting things you see on the streets of San Francisco.

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Uniqlo! I of course had to step in and check it out, even though I had no intentions of buying anything. (I walked out with a new jacket.)

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There were a lot of interesting statement shirts!

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RAINBOW STAIRCASE! The colors would move up/down the steps!

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The jacket I walked out with. It has thumb holes!! Also, do not mind the all-red outfit. That top is actually an undershirt, and I was wearing something else on top of it. LOL. Also, this entire outfit—including my socks—is (not really) sponsored by Uniqlo. <3

I found myself back in the vicinity of Westfield, since I was to meet up with my uncle that evening for dinner and a movie. We went to see Monuments Men, which I admittedly slept through, but just the first part. I hadn’t noticed that I was incredibly tired, but the movie picked up the pace later on, so I managed to keep my eyes open.

I didn’t have to take the train back to Daly City anymore! We were greeted by the eerie fog, which I always seem to equate with horror movies.