Thursday, 31 December 2015

Fireworks

I closed the last few minutes of 2015 by the road side, near my old house, waiting for fireworks display from nearby malls. This has been our rituals since the kids were toddlers. Inem always the one who is very excited about the fireworks, comparing which mall displays the best fireworks.

This year, as I looked at the firework, a sadness crept into my soul... Something I didn't feel in the previous years. The faces of my friends who passed away in 2015 came up. As I looked at the brightly lit sky, I saw their faces, I remembered of their smiles, their laughs, our conversations.... and suddenly I missed them. I wondered if they could see the fireworks from their place too.. I wonder if the fireworks sound louder from their place...  I wondered if they could feel what I felt.. 

While everyone "ooohh and aaaahhh" at the firework display, my mind raced back remembering the unforgettable moments I had in 2015. Slowly, the sad feeling subsided. I had many sad things happened in 2015 but I also had a lot of unexpected blessings and beautiful moments.

Allah called back three of my friends last year but I met many new friends in 2015. New friends can never replace the old friends but I hope one day these new friends will be my "old friends" too.. Not just old acquaintances.

I attended my high school reunion last year and re-acquaintanced with my old friends. It is really fun trying to match names and faces of old friends. I have always been terrible at remembering names. It embarrassed me to forget the names of friends who used to be in the same class with me. However, the embarrassment turned into laughters as a lot of them were also as bad as me in the name game.

Last year I had a chance to meet, chat and laugh with a few of my BFFs who were separated thousands of miles away from me. The meetings reminded me that no matter how far apart we are, how different our lives are now, when we are together, we are still the same crazy talkative women who think too much about everything and nothing. 

I also attended the wedding of my parents' BFF's son. My parents have been friends with them since their primary school days. I used to hang out in their house and have family vacations together. Their children become our best childhood friends. I admire and treasure this friendship. I don't see this kind of friendship everyday.  When my father was unwell, he cheered him up. When my father was too lazy to exercise, he picked him up and brought him for a walk. Last month, one of his daughters even bought a user-friendly smart phone for my father. The other daughter came to our house to set up and teach him how to use whatsapp and facebook.  (My parents love their Nokia phones.  My siblings and I bought them Blackberry and iPhones but they are hardly switched on.  We tried numerous times to teach them how to use smart phones but they insisted it's too complicated). My father listened to them and started using the new smart phone.

I feel so blessed to witness this kind of friendship.. I feel so blessed to have them in my life...: Ko Nam Seng, Ci Cen Mey, Nana, Fin2 and Raymond... You have touched our family's hearts more than you know. We are forever grateful.

I don't enjoy small talks and meaningless conversations with random people. I don't feel comfortable surrounded by acquaintances who may not remember me six months from now. I don't like attending parties where I know less than 50% of the party goers.

I need months and sometimes years to develop a friendship with someone. 

Because of that, I take friendship seriously. I take relationships seriously.
Because of that, my reflection of life in 2015 is about my friends and families.

Last night, after the fireworks died down, I saw the sky full of smokes. 
This morning, I woke up to a bright sky.

Last night, I let go all the sadness I had in 2015. I said goodbye to the heart-wrenching, tear-jerking and heart-pounding experiences. I let them disappear into the smokes.

This morning I woke up to a brand new page of my life. I pray to Allah to grant us colourful pages in 2016. I hope Allah bless us with more beautiful and meaningful moments.

To my readers... This blog is not an open blog. You read this because you are my friends, either on Facebook or Google+. From the bottom of my heart, I thank you for your friendship.

I wish you all a very Happy New Year... 
I wish you 365 days of happiness...
May God bless us all...












Sunday, 19 April 2015

Telegram from Heaven

I had a very bad food poisoning last week.  I have had several food poisoning before but never this bad.  This time I had tummy ache for 3 days.  It was so painful that I cried every time the spasms hit me and it hit me every 2 minutes.

After I went to the doctor twice, finally the pain subsided but my body was very weak. I couldn't even walk. I spent my days on bed, exercising....

Yes... Exercising....

I exercised my fingers and brain by texting, chatting non-stop on Telegram.

My high school friends are planning to have a reunion in December.  Because of this, a dear friend set up a whatsapp group to gather some ideas.  However we had more than 100 people, so whatsapp can't accommodate our needs.  We migrated to Telegram that allow up to 200 members in a group. While most of them live in Bandung, some of us live in Jakarta, US, Malaysia and China. Telegram really suits us well.

Initially we tried to remember which friends were which. Remembering 200 people that we met 25 years ago was an ardent task for us..... the 40+ years old who always forget where we left our keys.  If I can't remember what I ate yesterday, imagine trying to remember a friend whose front teeth were missing when he was in high school or a friend who sat next to this so and so. Those are the descriptions they gave when I asked them who is this guy and who is that gal.

Some uploaded blurred old high school pictures (and their current looks) but I still can't remember a lot of them. I only remember some friends who were very naughty in class. I remember friends who always cheated in the exam and got caught. I also remember friends who used to be punished by teachers for always came to school late.

Although I don't remember some of them, I managed to chat and re-acquaintance with them.  The chat was mostly in Sundanese, mixed with Bahasa Indonesia.  After a day or two, we got so comfortable with each other.  We felt like we never parted. The chat room was ON all the time. When I had to sleep, I would wake up to see 1500+ unread thread. If I didn't open the chat overnight, the thread can fetch 4000+.  There were always people chatting about something all the time. While the morning shift greeted us good morning at 5am, the night people stayed up and chatted til 3am.

What started as a reunion plan transformed into something else.  We forgot the topic of reunion and chatted about something else.  The topic varied from discussion about children, love, education, food, happiness, our teachers, health, medicine, adult stuffs (you know what I mean), business, money, doors and sink, and so many other things... YES, we did talk about doors and sink...!! I don't know why but we chatted about doors and sink for 2 days..!! And to make it worse, none of us is in the construction business.

Chatting with old high school friends made me smile and laugh more often.  It eased my tummy pain. It killed the boredom of staying in bed 24 hours.  It rekindled a lot of great memories. It added my knowledge about doors and toilet sink (or wastafel in Bahasa Indonesia).  But most of all it confirmed my belief on the importance of friendship in life.

When we chatted we forgot all the superficial manners.  We ditched our titles and social status.  We poked fun at each other.  We called each other names. We exchanged crazy silly impossible ideas with each other.  We argued about small stupid things. But most of all, we made each other happy....

All of us have responsibilities at work and home.  A lot of times, we work so hard to please our employers, to please our husbands/wives, to tend our children, to take care of our parents, etc etc.... But we often forget to please ourselves.  Many times we don't have time for ourselves.

Chatting with my high-school friends has given me the break I need, the crazy laugh I crave and the warm feeling I lust after....

I am blessed to know that I have friends who are as crazy as I am... Friends who are as passionate about food as I am... Friends who can tell each other off without hard feeling....

To Telegram... thank you for providing free friendly platform for friends to chat...



To my friends at Telegram.... thank you for making my food poisoning days bearable... thank you for accompanying me when I can't sleep at night... thank you for the laughs (lots of them).. and thank you for saving my money... (with you,, I don't need any botox..!!)

Have a great week ahead...!!