Those Who Live in Our Hearts

Sometime you know someone for years
and you still don’t know how to have a convo
beyond hello, how are you? Good? Great…

Sometime you know someone for years
and know each other so well
you can be quiet or rowdy, you’ll have a blast

Then you met someone
who made such a huge impression
that when their time is cut short
suddenly you’re left with a gaping hole
and you know not how to stitch it close

Oh life goes on
laundry not gonna clean itself
nor is dinner
would that they could

then you go somewhere
see something
immediately thinking, ooh need to tell.. oh yeah.. can not.

well dang, ain’t that just peachy
who’s cutting onions near me?

ok, moving along now

the problem with that gaping hole
no matter how good you are at sewing
you’ll never completely seal it
darn these microscopic holes!

and still, life goes on

sink or swim?

what you have to remember
life jackets and rafts are always available
seek and ye shall find

we’ll see each other anyway, eventually.

until then,

lebak bulus 170816



Dude, We Are Parents ?!?

The good thing about being an expatriate brat is that you get to have friends all over the world.

The bad thing about being an expatriate brat is that you get to have friends all over the world.


If you go to high school  and then settled down roots in the same city, it’s a fair bet that most of your classmates also settled there. With friends that are in within your physical area, you get invited to their wedding, visit them in the hospital, buy them birthday present before going to the party, and have the event posted on Path to show the world, “Hey look, I’m here!”

If  you go to highschool elsewhere far far away from your hometown, more than few hours plane ride, well, once you finished school, unless you set up roots in the Western Hemisphere chances are you’re not going to end up growing old(er) with your classmates. If, like me, you’re from the Eastern part of the meridian – the rather poorer parts as well – then good luck finding your secondary schoolmates in your hometown. As much as you would like to, it is not always practical to go to a friend’s birthday party when it’ll took a day or three flying commercial to get there. Although strangely enough, I did found 2 of my high-school teachers here but that’s another story.

Now, as we all know, the internet supposedly brings us closer. In a sense that’s true. If we lived back, say in the 80’s, we’d have to rely on postcards and letters to bring us up to date. With social media, it is much easier to find out what they’re up to. Well, provided they like to post regular updates about themselves as well. Obviously not all of your class mates are social media fans, but a good chunk of them do regularly updates the world about their general wellbeing and sometimes post some pics as well.  So I  get to find out who’s married, who’s not, who have kids, who have babies, etc.

The thing is, even if you see pictures of their wedding and whatnot, because you were never there, even though you know those photos are not hoaxes, sometimes it still didn’t really register in your head that the dude who used to wear grunge fashion all the time is now actually someone’s husband. So when at some point later they have kids, you got nearly choked on your morning coffee upon seeing their beaming face while holding their newborn baby as you checked your fb updates. Especially this year it seems that a bunch of them decided to have another kids, some are still in the oven, some already popped out. Interesting. Never let it be said that the class of 94 are nothing if not productive 😉

Strangely enough, these coffee-choking moments only occurred upon seeing the male members of my high school classmates. Somehow when it’s my girl friends’ babies there’s not a doubt in your mind that they are now mommies. It’s an,”Aww… how cute!” moment rather than, “Say whaaat??? Who thinks it’s a good idea for him to have kids?” Ok double standard I know! Totally guilty. Off to the dungeon!

According to Ishat, it’s because I still see them as those grungy, long-haired dudes waxing poetics about the latest from the Seattle sound or Headbangers Balls. In reality we’re all racing towards the big 4-0, already completed our education, and is now a model middle-class citizens of the world complete with dogs and cats just to make our already rambunctious household even more so. How is it possible that we are now moms and dads? However, as Hollywood tv writers would like you to believe, we never really left high-school.

So yeah, I do know that Em has a son, or that Mel and her sister are both Mrs, and that Mike, Nori, and Nadav are now family man. But somehow in your mind you still see Em as that girl with the big smile and the first person who told you what olliebollen is. You still think of Mel this zany, quirky person who’s allergic to chocolate yet ate it all the time. And the boys? Well, they’re still in that grungy, long-haired, checked flannel shirts period, except for Nori – he had short hair back then. We were a crazy bunch, living in a wild town, in a funky era.

Then again, what are high school if not the crazy time of our life? Now that some distance has passed, I have nothing but chuckles at the memory. We may be old(er) in real life, but we’re forever young in our hearts.

Ah class, I heart ye all.


yep, that’s one of the choices of where we’d go at night 😉


The One That Got Away?

… and they call it puppy kitty love….

You know those people that manage to be friends with their ex(es)? Some even claimed to be best friends with them. Well, I don’t belong to those people.

I’ve mentioned here how even though I’m no longer in regular contact, I do sort of keep up with them via the grapevine and what not. For the most part, they seem to be doing just fine and I’m happy they are happy. I wish them all the best.

But you know, memory is a curious thing. Like most people, I put music as background sound while working – it helps me concentrate – and sometimes my playlist would choose something that would remind me of them. Like right now.

I guess it’s the combination of the song and the current time that stops me at my tracks. It is the holy month of Ramadhan and suddenly I just remember how he used to remind me to pray on time. I think he was the first friend who ever did that for me and it sticks.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I was hanging out with the bad crowd and he was the saviour. Oh no, my youth is not that dramatic. But back then, I wasn’t very conscious about religion. It’s there, it’s part of my make up but I didn’t really think about it that much. He was the first friend who nudged me about that. At school or during our lengthy phone calls, he’d remind me if it was praying time and would stop the call to do so. He’d call me right back and resume the conversation 😉

He was a very kind boy and I heard he grew to be a kind man too. We parted mostly due to distance and age. We were still in our teens, living in different countries, definitely we were not thinking about marriage anytime soon so we didn’t fight for it. Doesn’t mean I wasn’t broken hearted when it happened. We both knew it wasn’t realistic to keep it going but wasn’t quite ready to call it quits either.

It’s not like I had lines of other boys waiting to go out with me. In fact I didn’t really date anyone at all after him. But after we part oceans, it just seems strange to call someone your boyfriend and not there to prove it. We did tried, we send letters and meet up during the holiday. The letters were not frequent to begin with, but I had look forward to it, gladly penned replies. Somehow, “…it just got colder…” as he puts it (don’t ask how I remember that particular line from his final letter. I just did) It just got strange…

Somewhere deep inside I mourned him though it was a mutual decision. Thankfully there was an avalanche of school work, a flurry of activities to keep me going, and of course, new land to explore. Such was the joy of being an expat brat. Eventually the pain ceased. Life continues.

I sometimes wonder what would happen had we stayed in touch. Would we get back together? Was he the one that got away?

As it turned out, he is not. Oh he turned out just fine, he was a good catch, good husband material, just not mine. People change as they grow. That’s what happened to us I think. We change. We didn’t became bad people, we just grew up.

He sorta became the benchmark of the guys that came after him. Guys that are kind, smart,  intelligent, cute, and religious.  So I am glad I met him because I knew for sure that guys with that kind of criteria exist.

So no, he’s not the one that got away. Because the one that is for me? Now him I don’t let go. Nor he me 🙂