Tension in the Spratlys, Relaxing in Toronto

What's really happening in the western Philippines' chain of islands called the Spratlys, ground zero for Chinese expansionist ambitions? Contributing writer Criselda Yabes reports on the tense situation at Ulugan Bay where the US is supposed to build a military base for joint operations with Philippine forces. Right now, even as China has swiftly built a sophisticated airport in one of the nearby islands, the Philippine Supreme Court has yet to rule on the constitutionality of the US-Philippine agreement. In "South China Sea Row - A Waiting Game," Yabes explains the problem and takes us to the 27-hectare Pag-Asa island ("Life Under the Glare of Chinese Territorial Ambitions") where 25 Filipino families live in peace and harmony with the Coast Guard.

In Toronto, Canada, a Filipino couple -- Roger and Tess Concepcion -- and their three children are successfully running a chain of inns, with the Baldwin Village Inn as its anchor. Regularly recommended by the top travel sites, the Concepcions' B&Bs are known for its home-away-from-home benefits. Read Noni Mendoza's "The Innkeepers of Toronto" to find out why. 

Filipino expats of a certain age will surely remember The Rolling Pin Bake Shop, which was the undisputed source of the best special-occasion cakes in Manila for years. However, chances are that you've never met the creative and entrepreneurial dynamo behind the success of the bake shop. That was the late Gloria Y. Nichols, and our contributing writer and food expert Elizabeth Ann Quirino, in profiling her posthumously ("The Baker of Lasting Memories"), brings back memories of delicious pastries and beautiful cakes from The Rolling Pin.

The Happy Home Cook feature this week is Goldilocks' Leche Flan, another memory-laden delicacy.

Our Video of the Week: Another CNN Philippines feature that will surely please our Kapampangan readers. Yen Baet, an acclaimed Filipina photographer, is one of your own. 


The documentary "Right Footed," which featured the amazing life of disability activist Jessica Cox, and our publisher Mona Lisa Yuchengco co-produced, won the Best Documentary Award at the Mirabile Dictu (International Catholic Film Festival), June 22-25, 2015 at the Vatican.

Watch Our Video Again: Inspiring Jessica

Aaron Isip, the young Filipino chef in Paris that we featured in our Video of the Week was awarded the Le Trophee Espoir of Ile de France by Gault and Milleu, a much-coveted honor in the city of gourmands. 

Watch Our Video Again: Chef Aaron Isip of Restaurant Dix-Huit

You read about "Right Footed" and Chef Aaron Isip first in Positively Filipino.


Gemma Nemenzo

Editor, Positively Filipino