If life had unfolded according to plan, I’d be shopping for my corporate clothing and saying goodbye to friends and families while booking my fully reimbursable one way ticket to Melbourne.
And somehow I am still here.
Another two months, at least, before the embassy can decide whether I am fit enough to work in their beloved country or not. As developing story is still in the make, I’ll probably have better voice and insights once I cross the finish line. For now, let’s ponder what had happened exactly in the past two, oh so precious, months.
Friends. Friends happened. Carrying their world with them. Though some seem to roll on top of it with ease and grace of a black swan in a lake of ugly ducklings, while other select few lug the world behind their backs as if it’s their cross to bear alone. And so we marbled our world against each other. Gently knocking them against one another. Sometimes to check for common denominators that would validate those crazy antics happening in our worlds. But most of the time we’d collide our respective worlds just for the hell of it as nothing beats aimless argument of simple matters seen from multitude perspectives. Collisions create energy. The extroverts would rise from such energy and the introvert would think that they’ve been robbed.
And I happen to toe between the line of the two. As a lot of people are these days. Toeing between two extremities, carrying only a balancing pole of elementary stuffed moral lessons and parents’ wisdoms. While the world got bigger and bigger in our backpacks as time goes. Do we need bigger and longer balancing pole of moralities and rules to keep us in line? Perhaps. But that again depends very much on what sort of friends you so choose to surround yourself in. And so friends happened. And pleasant as they are, they’ve also taken me many places where a lot of firsts happened.
Firsts. And places. The Kalimantan jungle trip. The first time I’ve trekked under a blanket of star dusts with the help of a crappy torch and the moonlight. The first time I’ve trekked the Borneo jungle barefooted. The first time I’ve bathed in a river in the midst of little girls presenting us wildflowers and their dangdut songs. And then Diving. Diving took me to swim in a filthy pool of Simprug Pertamina. Diving took me to breathe 10 meters underwater. Diving took me to forget about the world for a minute and feel weightless even just for a short 40 minutes. Diving also took me to Nusa Lembongan where I, for the first time, enjoyed travelling alone. And for the first time I felt comfortable being surrounded by strangers, which their friendliness or snobbery hold absolutely no account of my emotional well-being. Bali took me to see friends, old and new, and reacquainted with them in new lights, new settings, new conversations and newfound joys. The Buni Ayu caving expedition saw me for the first time being more worried whether I ruin my friend’s superpower torch more than getting bruised and splattered by mud. The Jogjakarta trip with a visiting friend made me realize how blonde haired, blue eyed girls are still idolized in Indonesia and that some of the residents are simply fascinated with their collection of bule snaps. What’s not new is how I am reminded yet again how truly friendly Indonesians are. The Semarang, (m)Bandungan trip were just laughter. I have no other word to describe. Laughter. Lots of it. The Jember trip that never happened brought a friend and I for the first time to realize how truly a secret is the Secret Zoo of Batu. We never made it to Jember due to my incessant hyena-coughs and sky rocketing temperature. But giant rats, lemurs and a good chunk of cute monkeys we did see. Plus meeting grandma, uncle, auntie, mom and dad in between the trips had pretty much summed up the last two months.
And it scares me, a little, that I am just barely scratching the surface.
Indonesia oh Indonesia.
Two extra months. What am I to do with you now.