We all need to take a break once in a while.

While the grind and hustle are real, what is life if we aren't enjoying it. We aren’t meant to wake up, go to work, and repeat the same process for the rest of our lives from Mondays to Fridays. We need to live life to the fullest. That’s what our weekends and work leaves are for. So don't forget to slow down the clock and relax.

Fortunately, I had the opportunity to take a break from my regular work schedule, and here’s how I did it. Thankfully, Mercedes-Benz lent me the keys to the new GLA 200 AMG. Talk about a good day ahead.

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But first, coffee

Our morning fuel – coffee. We all enjoy a cup of joe to start the day no matter the occasion. Whether it's heading out for work or taking a rest day from the hustle and bustle of our weekday routine. This day was no exception.

To start the day, I decided to hit up Prologue Café at Scout Gandia in Quezon City. While it might be a rest day, I didn't just drop everything and go off the grid. I still have to check up on my portfolio, businesses, and even read up on the news. Thankfully most of, this can be done from the comfort of smartphones wherever we go.

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Because of that, breakfast at Prologue Café was so enjoyable. Best of all, there was also parking for vehicles – a very important factor for most customers today.

As for the meal, rather than the usual cup of coffee in the morning, I got a cold glass of iced mocha. It was a hot day, after all, and I figured something cool would be more refreshing. I paired it with the café’s take on a breakfast staple – French toast. The resto had a unique twist on it by topping it with ice cream and garnished with berries and fruit sauce. Not to mention they used a very generous slice of bread which soft and full of flavor.

After wrapping up breakfast, it was time to head out for a drive.

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Drive Therapy

We're all stressed with everyday traffic in Metro Manila, especially coming from the nearly-zero traffic during the lockdown. As a result, the idea of driving around town isn't really comforting anymore. Given the worsening traffic situation lately, it can sometimes take an hour to get from Makati to Makati.

Beyond the traffic, driving can be very therapeutic; it can be an escape from our everyday routine. Behind the wheel of the Mercedes-Benz GLA, it surely was.

Since it’s my day to unwind, I decided to go on a quick drive around town. I took advantage of the new expressways, which gave me a breathtaking sight of the capital. With all the different driving modes available, I enjoyed tinkering with them on the fly via the Dynamic Select switch. Plugged my phone into the MBUX infotainment system, and I got to enjoy Apple CarPlay and listen to my playlists on Spotify. The new head unit is a touchscreen too, so you don't have to rely on the trackpad to change settings.

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It might have a small 1.3-liter engine, but power output is rated at 163 PS and 250 Nm torque; more than enough power to cruise along the expressways and accelerate from stoplights. While the power was nice to play with, I was light on the pedal to save on gas and not to go over the speed limit. Thankfully, the GLA can help with that too. There are several driving modes to choose from (Eco, Comfort, Individual, and Sport), but driving in Eco made the GLA one fuel-efficient vehicle. Considering how expensive gas is these days, it’s a welcome bonus, especially for people like me who drive to unwind. Want to go fast? Sport is the way.

Just because I cruised along the expressways and the city didn't make the drive any less boring. The steering of the GLA was light but precise, and you can easily change lanes without having to worry about too much body. Going through heavy traffic to get to the expressway wasn't stressful either with the GLA's comfortable seats and suspension, which absorbed most of the bumps on the road.

While I wanted to take the GLA further, I only had one free day to myself, and going out of town would have been tiring towards the end. The scenic drive around Metro Manila was more than enough too. As the cliche saying goes, it's not just about the destination but also the journey. 

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Getting a nip and tuck

After driving around and enjoying the breathtaking view, it's time to relax. By that, we mean our bodies. One of the best ways to do that is by visiting the barber; your barber, for that matter. Get a haircut, shave, and more. Not only will you look dapper, but you'll also feel young and fresh after.

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My last stop for the day was my staple barbershop – My Mama Said in Diliman, Quezon City. There, I had my usual cut with my barber, Mark, to get me ready and looking fresh for work the next day. The haircut felt therapeutic and made me look and feel better since I no longer had to cover my messy hair with a cap each time I go out.

But I wasn’t the only one being pampered while at My Mama Said.

Drive to unwind: Guy

A nice and shiny ride

I also gave the GLA some TLC by treating it to a wash and vacuum. It is my ride after all, and it took care of me very well while on my day off. It deserves to look squeaky clean and looking shiny. Best of all, I even had a nice view of the car while getting a cut.

The staff at My Mama Said are also very meticulous when it comes to cleaning and washing vehicles. They vacuum most of the door pockets and even wipe the panels usually touched to remove nasty fingerprints. They make sure there is no irritating water residue on the glass before you set off. 

Our rides deserve to be clean, they are our everyday partners, after all. The GLA took care of me during the much-needed day off; I got pampered, the car should too.

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I don't expect you to do the same during your day off. Hopefully, it did give you an idea of how to spend it. Remember, while earning money and spending time at work is important, never forget to enjoy life as well. Too much work, too little enjoyment could lead to stress and burnout.

Work hard, play hard, and more importantly, have fun.