(Words by Joachim Valdes; Illustration by Arom Liban)
Negativity is a contagious disease, one that’s hard to avoid after scrolling through social media feeds filled by one inept comment after another. Picking fights with internet trolls is never wise, but when 50% of subscribed online content is politically-charged, it’s no one’s fault if people tire of the web. Nevertheless, whether winning or losing an argument, we all lose some time and patience and even hope for mankind.
What to do after all this? Get away from the world that drowns your opinions out and find a place of refuge for a few hours, just to get your bearings. What better place than somewhere far, far away from the computer?
There’s no better place to drown your impending existential crisis than the Hugot Café. Enjoy the fun meals endearingly named after your (or your friend’s) bitter relationship status and eat your feelings away, manhid naman siya, eh. Before you leave, make sure you write down your deep, heart-wrenching “reflections” on the café’s #HugotWall. After which, you can walk away not only full, but fulfilled.
Address: South Park High Commercial Complex, 262 Alabang-Zapote Road, Pamplona Tres, Las Pinas
Bengal Brew / Wolf and Bear Café
Animal lovers escape human interaction and leave the negativity of this world behind for animal companionship in this cat and dog sanctuary. For a set hourly rate, you can sit and pet a plethora of dogs or cats of different breeds. That rate also includes food and drinks of your choice, and for an extra fee, treats for your animal friends as well.
Address: Manhattan Parkview, General Malvar Cubao, Quezon City
Take your rage with you and pack your bags for one hell of a road trip with your squad up north. Inside Isdaan, a floating bar-resto place in Tarlac, stands the Tacsiyapo Wall, where customers can throw anything from cups to TV sets for a fee. “Tacsiyapo” is a curse word in Kapampangan roughly translated to “Shame on you!” but with the gravity of the dreaded P.I. word in Tagalog, and this is what they recommend for you to shout while throwing whatever item you purchase.
Address: MacArthur Highway, Gerona, Tarlac
While escapism is a necessity for any human, it will only be effective when you come back. Feel free to take your time; rest and recharge. The hate may be strong, but believing in something worthwhile is even stronger.