As the story has it, one day I headed to the opposite side of the globe – the Flipside. I arrived in Korea on February 16th, 2005 and thought I’d do a year, then leave. I went from being some random foreign girl to taking on labels I never imagined – university professor, film extra, professional boxer, reality TV star, CEO of my own girls-only fitness company (Flipside Fitness), CEO of my own boxing club (Hulk's Club, formerly known as Hulk's Boxing), and now I'm launching my 3rd business -- Empowered Clubhouse.

After 11.5yrs in Korea, I then picked up one day and returned to Toronto, Canada. But then I left again. This time it was for the Philippines. That's where I am now, living in the land of the happy people. The struggles are real and the struggles are many but I'm living life on my terms, I'm calling the shots, and I'm doing what I love. Life is an amazing adventure and this is my story of yesterday.

Friday, April 14, 2017

A Fabulously Good Friday... Friday, April 14

Off to the countryside for a family dinner party and parade fun.

I was invited to participate in the Good Friday parade.  I was told it was a 200 year tradition and tonight I was to walk behind one of two floats my family pulls through the parade.

I doubt this countryside town has ever had a blonde foreigner like me in it.

I was told to wear a white shirt and that it'd last about an hour but no sooner did I meet up with family and start the parade but then I was corrected.  It'd be a 2-3 hour parade walk.  In actuality though, it only lasted just over 2 hours but it was way more fun than I had anticipated.  Family and I chatted the whole way and I kind of branched off with one particular family within the family -- a family of four with two overly sweet, confident kids.  Later on, closure to the end of the parade, I then paired off with one of my aunts.  Others had taken a short cut and left the parade.  I looked around and realized it was just her and I representing the family, wearing our white shirts and walking with the float.

During the parade I was approached by two different clusters of kids -- elementary-aged boys who all wanted to know my name and whom had got my attention by rubbing my arm and sending me smiles. They were super cute and I figured they just wanted to practice their English so I amused them by asking them questions and saying what random Tagalog (Filipino) words I knew.

Both before and after the parade we all gathered at the property belonging to family.  When I initially stepped foot through the front gate I'll admit I was guilty of writing the place off as being stereotypically country style but I was so wrong.

The place was absolutely gorgeous.

There were several buildings on the property, the coolest of which was a kind of treehouse made for the children that lived there.  The main house had this amazingly tall ceiling and it felt super cozy.  It was nothing like what I had expected.  People packed the main building where all the food for everyone to fest on was.  Some people sat outside while others wandered around the property, mingling and watching the kids play in the yard and in the pop-up pool.  I raced around on a random kid's scooter I found and made friends with the shaggy black-haired dog.

I don't know what there was more of, food or people.  Seriously.  Filipinos love their food!!!  

I ended up meeting what we were quick to label "my Filipina twin" -- a girl with my name who was also a hardcore athlete.  She's a triathlete who is as cute as she is about her training and I laughed at the realization that we were even twinning with what we were wearing -- a white tank top and jean bottoms.  

I met an overdose of people today, walked a ton, picked up a lot of sun, and shared a lot of giggles.  That was the good in today's Good Friday though I argue it was fantastic.

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