I have been feeling somewhat mellow for the last few weeks.


It started last Lebaran (Eid al-Fitr), that I celebrated in Bandung like almost always. It would be the last Lebaran for me being single, I thought, while walking to the Eid prayer in the morning. A married friend once told me not to worry since no drastic change would happen once you got married, other than you’d be legal to sleep (and not sleep) with your significant other, you’d love what you had always loved and hate what you had always hate anyway.


Post-Lebaran bowling session like this will still happen next year, then.


But the nervousness and anxiety linger. I feel like I’m in a long process of saying farewell. I’m excited for the new beginning, of course, of being newlyweds and starting my own home and all.


Perhaps what makes me more mellow is saying farewell to two best friends from high school, who had been around for years in Jakarta and hung out with me sometimes. Zelda left to have her master degree in the US, while Vita will leave today to  a graduate study in Groningen, the Netherlands. They’re going to have their new beginnings, a very excited ones, meeting new people, broadening their horizons, traveling like never before, having new best friends before leaving them again and drifting away from each other… (I’m definitely being sentimental here).

See you soon, Vita! <3


Meanwhile, Imel, a friend who spent years as a journalist covering the anti-corruption agency KPK also said farewell to the profession. She jumped the fence to work in a PR agency. Welcome to the club of retired journalists. The world is pretty much okay here.

Farewell karaoke for Imel.


Then yesterday, I moved most of my stuffs to a rented flat (well, a rumah petak to be exact) near some train tracks. I stayed in the very same complex before, loooooong time ago when I was in my first grade. Moving back there is damn nostalgic, I still remember walking with Ibu (Mom) next to the train tracks to my elementary school, jumping around in a pair of red-blue-yellow-green Bubblegummers sneakers. I only spent around four months there though, before my family moved to Ujung Pandang (now Makassar) in South Sulawesi. Tomorrow I will start staying there for at least one year — the length of my first rent — then taking the train to go back and forth to my office everyday.


Talking about new beginnings, today my best friend Vennie had her engagement with Mario! I feel so happy for them. Vennie and me are turning into bridezillas lately, with our own anxiety and nervousness, but I’m very sure we’re gonna come out unscathed through all these ordeals.


Ira, another Erasmus Mundus scholar, also married today with Degi in Yogyakarta. I really want to come but well, sometimes you must sacrifice things due to priorities (damn priorities!). *virtual hugs for Ira*


To end this rambling about farewells, new beginnings, and anxiety: a new beginning also happened exactly 69 years ago, right here in Jakarta. The founding fathers and mothers of this nation said farewell to colonialism. A new country named Indonesia was proclaimed. Merdeka!

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