04 January 2017

Japan 2016 : How To Arrange My Japan Trip


Osaka Castle

I spent my childhood living with Japanese manga, and until the age of 15 I still read high doses of Japanese comics every day. It has always been a persistent dream to visit Japan someday.

I have been waited for this trip for so long, that I think I was too excited and didn’t plan it out carefully last year. So me and my friends bought the tickets in 2015, but it had to be cancelled due to some exams that I had to take last year. Learning from this experience, then I decided to wait for a time that was right. This is a country I wanted to see whole my life, so I wouldn’t let it slipped out of my fingers again. I hope you enjoy this blog post and it will help you through making your own Japan trip as well!

01 January 2017

Jakarta Dari Balik Helm

foto diambil waktu lagi nge-Gojek (jangan ditiru)
                           

This post brings a nostalgic feeling to me. It's the feeling that puts a smile in your face. The feeling when you know you had a good memory that will lasts forever.

Bulan Februari tahun ini, setelah mengikuti ujian, ada gap waktu sebulan untuk menunggu hasilnya. I took a short holiday in Lombok after that, just 3 days; and I decided to go to Jakarta after that. Di Jakarta banyak keluarga, dan aku berpikir untuk mencoba-coba mencari kesempatan untuk magang di rumah sakit sambil mengisi kekosongan.

Siapa yang menyangka kalo pada akhirnya aku akan tinggal di Jakarta selama hampir 6 bulan?

Aku di Jakarta dari akhir Februari-Mei, pulang ke Makassar sepanjang Juni dan Juli, lalu kembali ke Jakarta di bulan Agustus dan tinggal hingga akhir September.

Waktu-waktu itu tidak terasa, seperi kata orang, saat waktu berlalu cepat berarti kau sangat menikmatinya.

Yang awalnya hanya bersantai-santai dan menemani ponakanku bermain, hingga menonton berbagai macam konser, sampai akhirnya berhasil magang di rumah sakit, semua kujalani dengan enjoy. Awalnya aku datang pure bener-bener kayak liburan, kerjanya cuma jalan-jalan dan main sama sepupu dan ponakan, pindah-pindah ke rumah om tante dan sepupu, sesuai dimana aku dicari aja kayak wanita panggilan...wkwkw sampai akhirnya sadar kalo keuangan sudah menipis dan sudah waktunya mulai benar-benar cari "duit makan" seperti tujuan awal.

Semua diawali dengan ragu. Apa bisa saya kerja di Jakarta, dimana budayanya pasti sangat berbeda, mana saya betul-betul awam soal "what's to do" and "what's don't" mengenai kerja di Jakarta. Tapi nekat saja. Tanya teman sana-sini, dan akhirnya mulai coba-coba jaga di beberapa tempat. Aku, yang notabene lahir besar di Makassar; walaupun sudah sering ke Jakarta, betul-betul merasakan rutinitas baru. Bangun pagi-pagi, naik kereta ke klinik di berbagai macam tempat, yang aku cuma bisa telusuri lewat dewa Google, dan berdasarkan arahan teman, mulai coba-coba naik KRL dan metromini.

Nyasar? Jangan bilang. Sering!
Nyasar di ujung Bekasi antah-berantah (saya tinggal di rumah tante di Jaksel), salah turun stasiun, deg-degan stres terlambat karena salah perhitungan jam berangkat, celingak-celinguk karena udah sampai di Tangerang tapi ga ada Gojek yang mau antar karena ternyata lokasi kliniknya di kawasan industri di daerah tol Tangerang...yang notabene susah aksesnya... each day was an adventure.

I loved that feeling when I packed my things in my backpack, and went around Jakarta to find jobs. Pekerjaan ini mengharuskan saya berpindah-pindah, dan menginap untuk setidaknya 3 hari di satu tempat. Tak bisa kulupakan perjalanan tiap jaga di Bekasi Timur, di klinik kecil di ujung Bekasi, yang kalo disebut tempatnya pasti ga ada yang ngeh. Trus kalo ga ada pasien ga tau mau ngapain (pasiennya sedikit). Yang kalo hujan jalanan dalam komplek itu becek smua dan berlubang-lubang :D. Tapi ga tau kenapa, semuanya terasa menyenangkan.

Yang awalnya kagok sampai akhirnya hapal semua jalur KRL. Untung kereta sekarang udah bagus, dingin dan bersih. Yang ga enak ya paling cuma kalo ga dapet tempat duduk. Pagi-pagi kan rame, bergencet-gencetan dengan ibu-ibu yang ngotot naik meskipun udah full. Yang kalo ditegur malah balik marah: "lhaaaa sama samaa cari uang kok!" :D

Sekitar 1 jaman di bus, menatap perjalanan, dan menikmati orang-orang yang naik turun. Baru tau aku kalo orang di bus Jakarta nyari uangnya kreatifnya patut diacungi jempol. Ngamen udah biasa. Yang kadang-kadang bikin nahan geli kalo ada juga orang yang nyari duit dengan mempertontonkan keahlian baca sajak, puisi atau cerita bersambung dari buku dengan lagak dramatik. And we supposed to pay for thaaaat? Hahahahahhah. Tapi kan namanya juga usaha ya bu...iyaiya. Ah, just another ordinary day in Jakarta...

Pemandangan favoritku adalah menatap Jakarta dari balik helm.
Aku penggemar terberat ojek motor online di Jakarta, berhubung di 3 bulan terakhirku di Jakarta tempat kerjaku udah sisa 1 yang menetap dan jaraknya cukup dekat dari rumah om dan tante, jadi naik ojek hampir tiap hari sudah merupakan keharusan.

Dari balik helm, saat pulang kerja di malam hari, Jakarta tampak sendu. Kenapa sendu ya padahal ramenya minta ampun? Daerah Sudirman sih parah ramenya apalagi kalo malem. Tapi ada hal yang indah di balik lampu2 kota kemerlap, mobil yang lalu-lalang dan klakson yang bertalu-talu. Ada yang indah dari berbusuk2 ria kena asap knalpot dan mengejar kereta. I dont know why but I enjoyed it every time. 
Meriah tapi sepi, ramai tapi damai.
Maybe it's just me, but I feel so relieved. It's like you get that taste of freedom that you won't change with anything. Freedom. The freedom to live alone, to choose where do u want to go, where do u want to work, and the happiness of being totally depend on yourself.

Walaupun dari dulu aku memang tipe penyendiri, jujur aku tetap kadang-kadang suka ngeluh kalau keluar dari comfort zone..jadi hidup seperti ini tak kusangka akan membuatku bahagia. Padahal awalnya aku diwanti-wanti ortu untuk tidak banyak mengeluh apabila hidup di Jakarta. Tapi karena kebaikan Tuhan, setiap detiknya berlalu menyenangkan. Sampai di rumah sehabis bekerja, aku selalu membuka helm ku dengan hati yang ringan dan bahagia.

Aku bertemu banyak orang-orang baru, perawat-perawat RS ku yang baik-baik hati yang masih sering kontekan sampai sekarang... bisa main sama ponakanku yang lucu, bisa jadi "baby sitter" sepupu-sepupuku, bisa ketemu dan jalan-jalan sama keluargaku dan sahabat-sahabatku yang tinggal di Jakarta. I miss my muay thai and freeletics (eh bohong mah kalo freeletics) routine with Bon.

Walau mungkin tidak seberapa lama dibanding perantau yang menetap di Jakarta, aku tetap belajar untuk survive, belajar untuk bekerja, belajar untuk hemat...and most of all, I learn to enjoy the solitude.

Di Jakarta aku juga tanpa direncanakan bertemu denganmu....iya, kamu. Yang sempat membuatku jantungku berdegup ireguler sebelum lenyap tanpa jejak.

Begitu baik Tuhan, karena aku diberi kesempatan untuk mengalami waktu-waktu ini. Kiranya hanya waktu dan Dia yang bisa menjawab, akankah angin membawaku kembali pada kota ini atau tidak.

Aku akan selalu rindu hari-hari itu, di saat aku menatap Jakarta dari balik helm dan tersenyum.

30 July 2016

My Faith Journey: How I Became A Doctor

Since I was a little kid, I always dream to be a designer. Growing up, my "dream-job" list is  getting longer. I wanted to be an architect, a writer, badminton athlete, astronaut, actress, stylist, working in a magazine... Never in my wildest dream I intended to be a doctor.


Life can be so playful sometimes. Until now, I still don't exactly know why I entered med school. One thing I remember; I didn't trust myself that I could finish my engineering school on time due to my laziness and how bad I am on maths (building and structure requires a lot of maths). I decided to retry the  university exam again on the next year. All I knew was, I really wanted to move from Makassar and study abroad; maybe Bandung or Jakarta. But my parents was against my decision and they convince me to try local med school instead. I agreed and.. I got accepted, I didn't even know how it could happened. I was really scared after that. It was flattering; but scary. I didn't know if I could make it. I didn't even like blood for God sake. I didn't get the vibe that maybe most of Indonesian students feels; the euphoria of being med student. I felt like I wanna let go of the chance and go back to my architecture major. I really was not ready to be a new student again and to learn completely new things. 

In the end of day, after a lot of arguments with parents and with myself, especially.. I finally agreed to enter med school. And that's the beginning of everything.


05 July 2016

Cormoran Strike Series ( The Cuckoo's Calling, The Silkworm, Career of Evil) Review



Robert Galbraith is a pseudonym for J.K. Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter series and The Casual Vacancy.

The whole series takes the perspective of an ex-soldier Cormoran Strike, private detective who lost part of a leg in a bombing in Afghanistan. He run a nearly-broke detective agent in London and with the help of his pretty assistant Robin Ellacott, he faces some mysterious cases and juggle with complicated personal life as well. 

Honestly, I started read the books around 3 years ago based by the fact it is written by J.K Rowling alone, under the alias of Robert Galbraith. The lady, seems to be the only author that can make me truly interested in crime stories, because normally they bore me as well as frustrate me (I can’t never seem to guess who the murderer is). And I safely may say; I am never disappointed at all. Reading these three books thou, is somewhat a journey for me. I learn to be loyal. Loyal here means, you know I love Rowling so much, that whatever books she write I will definitely put my eyes into it; no matter what genre it is all about. The first book, The Cuckoo’s Calling wasn’t really impress me. For me it was slow pacing, drifting to irrelevant sub-plots, over detailed filling scenes and repetitive situations, but I was adamant that I should keep at it since it’s Rowling; again, and I am super glad that I did so. The climax was great and making worthy all the effort to read the novel. I like how it was about modelling industry, and after finished the 1st book I decided to give it a next try (on the 2nd book).

04 June 2016

"Dandelion" Concert

So far, 2016 has been so good to me. Especially around these times I’ve been spending in Jakarta, where it’s been three months since I “moved” here to find a better life. 

Mungkin kalo ada yg liat postingan saya belakangan, saya jarang update, tapi sekali posting soal konser, temen-temen saya sampe bilang saya anaknya “hura-hura” banget akhir-akhir ini. Hahah!  Demi apapun enggak. I am that kind of person that goes to concert only on really special event. It means, the musician/event has to be on my planned-list. And with His mercy, I got the chances to watch THREE of them in these three months! Two months ago I (finally) watched Java Jazz Festival. Bayangin aja Java Jazz sudah belasan tahun ada di Indonesia dan baru bisa nonton tahun ini. Trus kemaren, hari Minggu, bisa nonton Joey Alexander yang KEBETULAN main ke Jakarta pas saya lagi ada disini. Dan tadi malam, akhirnya bisa nonton Monita Tahalea, the singer I’ve been loving since 2011. 

warning: most of the photos belongs to Instagram-ers. sorry that I have to borrow it, my phone camera sucks at night

It seems like everything has written in my hand by God. Call me lebay, but the thing is, I ran out of ticket from such a time already. Pengumuman konser Dandelion by Monita Tahalea udah ada sejak beberapa waktu lalu, dan saya memang lengah ga langsung pesan tiketnya. Mungkin kemarin saya bener-bener sibuk jadi ga sempat beli tiketnya. Atau lupa karena udah beli tiket Joey Alexander yang cuma beda seminggu. Akhirnya dua minggu sebelum hari H, liat komen-komenan di IG yang mengeluhkan tiket habis, akhirnya saya pun mengecek semua tempat/web penjualan, dan ternyata beneran abis. Akhirnya sampe mention-mention Monita dan hubungin cp yang dikasih, udah keabisan juga katanya sampe spot lesehan. Sedih banget sih, soalnya saya emang beneran ngefans sama dia dan musiknya dari dulu. Kebeneran, pas saya lagi di Jakarta, eh Monita menggelar konser tunggal perdananya. We’re meant to be! Halah. Singkat cerita, saya tetap ngotot mau nyari tiket, kalo perlu datang on the spot dan membujuk abang-abangnya biar boleh masuk. Selain itu saya juga nyuruh temen saya si Brian si anak gaul Jakarta buat cariin, kali-kali aja ya kan, walau katanya udah habis dimana-mana. Dan, ini kenapa saya bilang Tuhan (selalu) baik, jangan tanya dapat darimana, si Brian berhasil dapat tiketnya. Saya malas nanya dia how? and where?, yang jelas dapat, mari kita pergi menengok Dandelion. Yey.

02 June 2016

When I Met Joey Alexander

Everyone remembers the day they met their idol, if of course they ever got the chance to. Few days ago was one of the best thing that ever happened to me.

Almost two years ago, I was browsing through Youtube and accidentally clicking on the suggested channel. I looked at the video title, and he was a kid with a piano, a boy, around 9 or 10. A kid good at piano, is nothing new. So many kids are good at piano. I look on the sidebar of the channel, it filled with videos of his rendition of so many classic jazz anthems. Then I thought, 'Ok, he got me, lets see.'

He sat down on the piano bench, cranked way up, looked at the keyboard, and launched into a tune that turned me upside and down. He not only nailed it, he did it with great stylistic flair.

His name is Joey Alexander, and he's Indonesian.




I instantly gone a lil bit dizzy after watching the 1st video, and can't stop looking for others. I am a major fan of jazz, especially the classics. That's why it felt so amazing, knowing that he plays many favorite tunes of mine. He's really awesome, his skill was unbelievable, actually I don't know much about piano technique, but as far as I can describe, I know that Joey play so wonderful and maybe not even the most senior piano player can do like he does. Because it's jazz. Jazz is all about soul and technique, if you can't get the "feels", you can't get the thing right. A kid at that age, playing like a reincarnation of Thelonius Monk and his class.. I am out of words. He became quite a phenomenon on the Youtube and jazz lovers around the world, they applaud him and established him as a "prodigy". And he's Indonesian, how cool is that? God. I instantly fell in love after two days non-stop of Joey Alexander.

Last Sunday was such a special day for me. I have been collecting Joey's videos for a couple of time now. I have already talked about how much I love him and his music to Randi and Kak Doni (because no one knew Joey that day, and these guys has same taste with me), but yesterday gave me a whole new perspective. I had the opportunity to go to Joey Alexander Concert in Jakarta. I feel so lucky knowing that I've been working here for almost 3 months now, it was like God and the universe conspire to make me happy. Hahaha. As we know, Joey is based in USA now, his schedule is full of so many jazz festivals, even the most prestigious ones (I am really happy for that, he's too good to stay in Indonesia), especially after his unbelievable performance as the youngest Grammy nominee at Grammy Awards 2016. A year ago ago while listen to him, I really want to watch him live, and I thought it was a tiny chance. Turns out, I happen to be in the right city at the right timing.

I had a really good seat (worth the price sih hahhahah), where I can see Joey clearly from the best side. When he came into the stage, I was so ecstatic!


Joey spoke like the child that he is, a bit awkward in front of all of the adults. But every time he sat down to play, he was simply brilliant. His technique was beyond dazzling, just like in the videos. His dynamics were also excellent; he knew when to be subtle and when to build to a crescendo. I love that he played many songs from his album, like the infamous "My Favorite Things", the challenging "Giant Steps", and my fav from his album, his rendition of The Sound of Music's best, "Over The Rainbow". A very beautiful ballad and God knows how much I love that song, even more after Joey play his version. The sound was very awesome also because its supported by the HD facility at the hall. I can really catch the dynamics perfectly, and the beautiful sounding of drum-bass-piano. Ear-gasm at its best...


the bass player and the drummer are fellow Grammy nominee-musician; and Juliard School of Music Graduate. Too much talent on stage... I literally can't help the eargasm. They are gold!

The happiness wasn't even finished yet. Right after the concert, I convinced myself that I have to meet Joey in person. I don't know what it takes, I just have to see him in person, up close. Me and Brian were waiting outside the hall, but no sign of Joey. We even managed, to greet Mbak Najwa Shihab, yes the talkshow host, Barry Likumahuwa, the talented Indonesian jazz bass player, and Gerald Situmorang of Barasuara, and Monita Tahalea's guitarist, my favorite Indonesian singer. They just keep passing around the hall from the time we arrived at the venue, and I decided to say "hi", took a pic, have a lil conversation, and they were really kind. 

Anyway. Finally, Joey came out from his room, with some crews around him, and I thought 'geez, he's going home already'. But NO. He stopped at the photobooth. And suddenly the crews say that we can get a snap with Joey. Are you kidding me. I directly stand in line while the little Joey standing patiently in front of his big poster, waiting for us. OMG OMG. I am gonna have a pic with Joey!!

I saw with my eyes those people who took pics with him with enthusiasm, and leave him just like that. I don't know why, but I feel bad for him. They should like, maybe say something to him?  Maybe praise his marvelous concert? When I finally got my turn, I was - really - starstrucked. Yeah. Call me anything, but yeah.... I can't believe I was starstrucked by a kid. I never felt that feeling in my life, when you were a fan and so happy like u can't say anything right; when u have rare chance to meet your idol. Hahahahh! We took a picture, and I have to give other people their time. But my mind was working hard. 'If I just go now, I will be very much pissed of myself. This is the kid you listen to for a whole year! My unconscious mind yelled so hard. Then, I grabbed Joey's hand, and we shook. I say to him, "Joey, I am a big fan. Been loving u since 9." And then Joey smile so widely, his eyes stared at me brightly. To be honest, he seemed shocked. Hahahahahahhah. Aaaand one annoying crew shouted "AYOOO GA PAKEE NGOBROL, GA PAKE SALAMAN, FOTO AJAAAA!". Geez, man. Please. Just chill already. Can't you just let me be happy for a while? God. It's not like I am gonna pinch him or do-something-stupid, dude..
But I was really happy already! 

On our way home, Brian keep teasing me about how my words was kinda "weird". He said, "Lik. Tadi lo ngomongnya ngefans dari lo 9 tahun? Ato udah 9 tahun ngefans dia? Perasaan Joey belum main selama itu deh."
" Ngga. Maksud gue, gue ngefans dia dari umur dia 9 tahun."
" Hahahahahahh! Kayaknya tadi dia nangkepnya kayak gue, makanya dia syok ga jawab elu! Kali pikir dia, masa nih mbak-mbak ngefans dari umur dia 9 tahun, kayaknya gue belom lahir deh!"

Sialan. WKWKKWKWK. Bener juga sih......Oh well....It was all unplanned anyway, I haven't made the proper greeting yet, I should have prepare the words I am going to say to Joey if I ever get the chance. I should have say that how his music fixing my mood, and help me a LOT to concentrate through my study time. But yeah.... A fan is a fan....You lost your words in front of your idol.


I hope I will watch Joey's concert again, but in other side of the world. USA, the land of jazz, would be perfect. I save this in my pray. May God bless you Joey, with health and prosperity, so we can meet again sometime. 

*the photos are all mine, taken with phone camera, but some of them are also taken from Google*

Flores Sailing Trip


So this is the post that I've been waiting to post for so long. Pardon me that it took months to let u know about my very exciting trip, but I was just stuck on choosing which photos that I SHOULDN'T post. Come on, they are all too good to not-be-posted! So folks, here I present you, my amazing, Flores trip. 

Honestly, I am not really a beach person-type. Yes. Seriously. Sometimes, as an Indonesian, I feel guilty. The reason is simply that I don't like too much sunshine. Being born and raised in the warmest city of Indonesia, I know the capability of our sun and its effect on my skin. Scientists say that people with dark skin tolerate the sun better than brighter skin does, but it's all LIE. I've become a living victim for my entire life and that's why I can't tolerate too much heat because my fear had always proven true, my skin always gotten super darker after "sunny" holiday. It's not good "dark". Not pretty-tanned like Adriana Lima or Eva Mendes. 

Ehem. But. Flores is too valuable to be ignored. My antipathy to sunlight always defeated by the guarantee of superior scenery. I always wanted to visit Flores, and when it can be accomplished, without thinking, I grabbed my 110 SPF-sunscreen and backpack eagerly. Btw, this was my first trip by ship. We chose the PELNI ship because the flight to Flores was very expensive. Ship trip to Flores from Makassar takes 1 day and it was quite fun actually, especially if you were with a quite a lot of good fellas. You can play cards or any games on board, just be patient though, in the absence of cellphone signal during the day. The ship then announced that they offered us variety of movies to watch together in a watching-room, and it consists of local-horror movies starred by Julia Perez. Seriously.

When we arrived in the land of Flores, our private boat and the sailors had been waiting for us at the harbor to set sail. Our cute boat could hold 15 people and we luckily just had 7 passengers on board. The boat had an upper deck which were the sleeping quarters. There were also two bedrooms under the stair and one shower room. We chose our beds and changed our clothes. When I look off into the distant sea, I already knew I was going to enjoy this trip. The atmosphere was super exciting! We set sail around 11 AM, ready for a four days adventure. Aye aye, captain!