Pourquoi pas?

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Archive for the category “Love and Life”

Loving you…

“That’s because you’re madly in love with him!” he said for the third or fourth time in the last three hours we spent together.

I smacked his arm with the book I had in my hand. “I’m not,” I said, “at least not anymore… or at least I don’t think I am. I don’t know, it’s just different…”

“Different how?” he asked.

“Well, I don’t know… like, I don’t feel attracted to him physically… well, I wouldn’t mind kissing him, but that’s it… and yet… Gosh, I don’t know.”

“Physical attractions are common, but a mental connection is rare.” — Unknown

Maybe I am madly in love with you, on a deeper level than infatuation, a level where there’s no such thing as lust, but only love. The kind of love that makes me want to spend every possible moment with you, just to be, and nothing more. The kind of love that makes me worry about you, care about you, wanting to make sure everything is right in your life. The kind of love that makes it possible to have a conversation by simply looking into each others eyes and knowing exactly what the other wants to say. The kind of love that… is just the way I feel about you.

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GIT 2012 — a review

Sometime in February, I think, I found out that I was certainly going to be in Yogyakarta in June for the Global Institute of Theology (GIT). To be blatantly honest, I didn’t like that decision all that much. After all, it meant yet another month away from Geneva, from Europe… and to be in Indonesia, my own country, of all places! Uh-huh, not so cool. The thought of being part of another GIT, however, was quite a consolation, after all, the GIT means the world to me. I had a wonderful, wonderful experience as a participant at the 2010 GIT in the United States, and it was through this event that I came to know the WCRC and eventually got the internship! So yes, it was bitter-sweet, but nevertheless, on June 1st I boarded the plane to Jakarta, and on the 5th of June I was in Yogyakarta.

That was three weeks ago, and the GIT is about to come to an end. In fact, today was the last day of lectures, tomorrow is a free day (people are planning to go to the beach) and Saturday evening we will have a closing ceremony/talent show event before departing on Sunday.

The GIT 2012 experience has been bitter-sweet as well. I can tell you that being “on the other side” of the GIT is an interesting challenge. It meant a lot of work, going to bed late and waking up early, running around and shouting out announcements, dealing with about a thousand questions from the mundane (“what time is dinner?”) to the difficult (“would it be possible to…?”) and the plain crazy (“where can I get a wooden teddy bear?”), chasing people on and off the bus, and everything in between. The first week in particular was very hard, then things started to be a little better and I was able to mingle and hang out with the students more. One thing that I did try hard to do from the very beginning was to take part in all the worship services. I did eventually miss one particular service on one particular night where I was just super tired and something went wrong and I broke down, wailing in my room.

Being “on the other side” of course mean that I don’t get to form the bond that we had between participants in 2010, but it gave me the opportunity to be more of an observer… and I have to say watching a group of people from 22 different countries interact with each other is quite a show!

How does this GIT compare to my GIT? Personally, of course, I think the 2010 GIT was in quite a few aspects better than this year, but saying that would be unfair. After all, no two groups of people could be the same, and at the end of the day I’m sure that this GIT means as much for the participants as it did to the 2010 participants, and in fact this GIT means a lot to me too, in a different way than the 2010 one, but nevertheless still in a very good way. Sharing three weeks with people from all over the world, each with their own background, their own stories, and their own quirks and habits can only be positive in the end, that moment when you realize that you now know a whole lot more about the world than you did before, that you now have people to call your friends in many more countries than you know before, but most of all when you realize that even with all our differences, we could nevertheless be united.

Geneva, Day 2/10

What would you do if you knew you only had one day, or one week, or one month to live. What life boat would you grab on to? What secret would you tell? What band would you see? What person would you declare your love to? What wish would you fulfil? What exotic locale would you fly to for coffee? What book would you write? — One Week (2008)

While I don’t know the answer to the above question, I have 10 days to spend in Geneva before I have to go back to Indonesia again for a month (on duty again, mind you!) and I know exactly how I want to spend those days: hanging out with my super awesome friends!

And so yesterday (aka day 2/10), we decided to get together for a communal dinner followed by watching the first semi-final of Eurovision 2012 together at N’s place. I arrived early (of course) with most of the content of my fridge with me. Had a nice chat with N despite the fact that he was incoherent cause he was preparing soup for dinner.

Soon enough, T came knocking on the door with a tray full of the cutest cocktail ever which she had prepared, and as we were grabbing stuff to complete the preparation, M arrived. He had brought some appetizer which was oh-so-good. We had that, then the soup and then it was time for Eurovision. C came to join us sometime in between.

We made a list of the countries we think would be in the finals and were actually pretty good at it, except that Albania got in instead of Switzerland!! That was a disappointment. Personally I thought that Sinplus, the Swiss representative, was better than about half of the people who are in the finals… but I loved the fact that the Russian grannies are in the finals! 🙂

Back in Geneva (and loving it!)

After an 8 hour plane ride to Abu Dhabi and another 7 hours from Abu Dhabi to Geneva where I was either kicked, elbowed or subjected to displays of affection by the two people sitting next to me, I arrived in Geneva yesterday at 07:15am. To my ultimate joy, T was there at the airport to pick me up. Well, I already knew she was coming, so what was more of a joyful surprise was walking into my bedroom to see a huge banner that T, M and N had made. It made my day 🙂

Then I unpacked, took a shower, and went to work. YES, went to work. Before you think that the WCRC is a big meanie, let me tell you that it was my request to go to work. It was my way of dealing with jetlag, which proves to be highly effective.

Anyway, it was lovely to see Daph as well as C and others as well, and I had fun seeing people’s expressions as they received the gifts I brought (hey, I had an empty suitcase!). Daph of course was an angel and bought me lunch AS WELL AS baked me a cake which we had for tea time. It was an orange chocolate cake and it was the most delicious thing ever.

After work I accompanied T to her doctor’s appointment which was a great time to catch up before she went to a dinner and I went to the airport to pick up N who was on holiday in Germany. YES, it was ironically funny. I tried calling M who was supposedly at the airport too just because I thought it would be brilliantly funny if I meet both of them at the airport. LOL. Nevertheless, as N and I arrived in front of my apartment, M was already there. And so we had a catching-up dinner which was great.

The strange thing of course is that I did not feel like I have been gone for almost three weeks and just got back in a long-haul flight.

As always, it felt like coming home… and I think I found the perfect quote to describe why:

Home is not where you live, but where they understand you.
Christian Morgenstern

Updating from Indonesia

It’s been too long since I posted something proper here. Well, my little novel (not yet done, I know) is proper, of course… but I mean something that tells more about my life and my experiences… maybe with some insights and reflections. After all, that’s what this blog is supposed to be about. Sort of like my diary, but only the parts I would like to share with the world 😉

So anyway, here I am in Indonesia. As you might (or might not) know, I’ve been living in Geneva, Switzerland for the last eight months, but I came back to Indonesia on the 2nd of May on a business trip (as cool as that sounds, I have to admit I wish I didn’t have to do this trip, but that’s a long story).

From the 4th to the 8th, I attended the National Consultation on Mission held jointly by the WCRC, the CCA (Christian Council of Asia) and the CCI (Church Council of Indonesia) in Jakarta. On the 9th, I flew to Medan to take part in the Executive Committee meeting of the WCRC held in Berastagi, North Sumatera, between the 10th and today.

Despite missing Geneva like crazy, I have to say the experience has been a great one for me. First of all it was an opportunity to engage with so many people who are leaders (or future leaders) of their churches. To listen to the discussions, to be an “insider” to some issues that people on this level are talking about, that too is a privilege not many receive.

It has been a time of new acquaintances (I would say friends but as I spent more time engaging with my computer than with people, at least I have come to know them better than before), of discovering new talents (like interpreting!), of pushing my limits, of trying something new.

It was also great to finally be on Sumatra! And I’m looking forward to visit some places I now have friends in. It has also been a time where I reflect and reconsider my calling, and while I still am unsure, at least I have more things I can consider, and a bunch of people I know I can talk to.

All that being said, I must say I am looking forward to being back in Geneva, and in a way also looking forward to being back in Indonesia in June for the GIT.

As I always have said at one point or another in one way or another, I shall go where the Lord leads me to, and do what the Lord wants me to do there, and rejoice in the Lord always.

A bottle of champagne, two boxes of chocolate chip cookies, and a dash of randomness

This is one of those stories that just had to be written down so it can still be told properly when we’re old yet still as random as we are today 😉

Tuesday, about 9:45pm, T and I are at a restaurant having dinner after a movie night.
Me: So what are we going to do tomorrow?
T: I don’t know…
Me: Hey, we still have that bottle of champagne!
T: Oh yeah, and the cookies! When are we going to have them?
Me: Well, I don’t know, maybe we could have them tomorrow, like a belated lake day or something.
T: That would be awesome! Oh, and tomorrow’s Wednesday so O will be there too…
*pause*
T: And it was his birthday last week…
Me: Oh, right! So we could have a like a surprise birthday party for him!
T: YES. We could have it at my place… or no, at your place, and I’ll bring the champagne and cookies…
Me: Well, if it’s going to be a birthday party we need a cake.
T: Of course, you know, I’ve been wanting to bake a cake, so I’ll make that too. Like, I would go to work early then go home first, bake the cake, and then go to your place.
Me: Sounds like a great party. Just one problem though.
T: What’s that?
Me: Well, we haven’t asked O if he could make it. *bursts out laughing*
T: *laugh*
Me: Okay, so should I ask him and M? No wait, that would be strange. Oh yes, I’ll ask M and let him ask O.
*tries calling M*
*can’t reach him so texted him*
“M, would it be possible for us to arrange a little belated surprise bday party for O tomorrow evening? I tried calling u but can’t get through”

10:38 pm, M replies, basically saying yes.

10:50 pm, I called M.
M: So what’s the plan?
Me: The plan is… we have champagne, cookies, and cake which T will bring, and I’m supposed to clean up my apartment and well, you need to bring O here.
M: Oh. That’s umm…
Me: Basically no plan. Just ask O to hang out or something.
M: Well, he’s online on Whatsapp so I can do that right now…
Me: Okay…
M: He’s typing, he’s typing! He says he needs to study but he doesn’t know, “what would be your suggestion”? What do I tell him?
Me: I don’t know… come up with something, tell him you guys need to hang out with me and tsiry. Oh, wait, tell him that you and T are going to have a suprise farewell party for me as I’ll be leaving next week! Then it will make sense that you go to my place.
*conversation continues with uncertainty until I decide I should probably hang up cause I don’t want my phone bill to be ridiculously high*

11:14pm, I texted T
“T, it’s a yes from M and O except they haven’t decided on the time. What M told O: it’s a surprise farewell party 4 me. Brilliant, no? Anyway, so yaayy party tomorrow!!”

11:29pm, M texted me
“He said he’ll def be there at 09:35, couldn’t make it earlier… sorry”

11:34pm, my reply to M
“No prob, that just means we’ll surprise him right when he walks through the door…”

—————————-

Wednesday, aka Party Day

07:39pm, T texted me
“I just popped the cake in the oven at 07:20, it’ll take an hour so I’ll leave for your place 8:30ish”

08:30pm
*still no sign of T or M*

08:43pm, M texted me
“Sorry, won’t make it now, we need a bit longer.”

08:52pm, my reply to M
“Well, it would be really awkward if O comes earlier than you or T”

about 09:00pm, T finally arrives.
*conversation about cake, followed by conversation about M coming late*

09:15pm-ish
Me: Okay, question… what should we do if O arrives and M is not here yet? Should we just hide the cake and surprise him later?
T: Yeah, let’s do that…
Me: But if it’s a surprise party for me… why did I cook all this food??
T: Well, we could tell him that… umm… we met after work, came here and decided to cook all this food…
Me: And that would make sense, because??
T: I think we need M to be here before O comes.
Me: Uh, yeah, I don’t think that’s going to happen…
T: He has… 10 mins…
Me: Okay, rum and coke?
T: Yes, please!

09:30-ish
T: O could come any minute now, what are we going to do?
Me: Let’s just do it!
T: Do what?
Me: Surprise him when he comes through the door!
T: OH. Okay. Sure let’s do that.
Me: *puts candles on the cake*
T: You know that this is very random and very silly right?
Me: What, having a belated surprise bday party?
T: Yes.
Me: Well, it’s fun though.

09:35-ish, door bell rings
Me: OH he’s here, he’s here.
T: Turn off the lights.
Me: Okay.
T: No wait, it’s to dark!
Me: *turns lights back on*
T: *lights candles*
Me: *turns lights off* Okay… *opens door*
O: *stare*
T: HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!
Me: Surprise!!
O: What? Oh wow, thank you… but… this…
Me: It’s very random, I know.
*a whole series of candle blowing, cake cutting, etc.*
T: So did it work? Did we surprise you?
O: Why well, yes…
Me: Yaay!!
O: You guys are just so… randomly cool!

And so it went on… M finally came about an hour later, and anyways we had a randomly fun night, “and I’m feeling… GOOD!”

Yes, I have a little crush on him…

Not the cute guy at the chocolate festival I was completely testing the “stare, smile, look away” flirting technique with (and majorly succeeding, I think). Yes, he was kinda cute and all that, but really… I think I’ve passed the age where I have crushes on people based on their looks only.

Instead,
my current kind of crush
builds up from spending (a whole lot of) time with someone
just talking about random things,
resulting in having inside jokes;
sharing sweet little moments
that are sure to make people go
“wait, what was THAT all about?”
or maybe not, if the moments are really subtle;
giving glances
and making gestures
that speak more than words…
and staring at each other
in that awkward moment when
we have to part
and
we don’t really know how to do that.

Yes, mister, I do have a little crush on you.

Heartbreaks, Haircuts and Happiness

It started when I was in university, circa 2007. A happenstance. Then it became almost a habit, a necessity. I would get a haircut whenever I get my heart broken. The reason was always as described in this post: no use crying over spilt milk, broken relationships and cut hair.

So when I recently felt heartbroken, one of the first things I thought was: I need a haircut. Add to the above reasons the fact that he used to tell me how he liked my pretty, long brown hair. But being in Switzerland posed a problem. First, haircuts are highly expensive and second, for most hair salons I need to make an appointment. So I struggled. Asked a friend. Toyed with the idea of cutting my own hair. At one point I really felt like I desperately needed the haircut, so I went to the airport–thinking they would probably accept walk-ins and completely ignoring that it is even more expensive than anywhere else– but when I arrived the hairdresser had gone home (it was late) and I almost broke down.

Strangely enough, the next day I get an e-mail from Groupon, which I do every morning, actually… but this had a deal for a wash-cut-blow dry… for 39fr. instead of 105fr. How awesome is that?? Needless to say, I bought the deal and then planned with Wanderingdaph to go together as she also got it. It was hard to fit our schedules though, so Daph said I should just go ahead… and she booked me an appointment.

The appointment was yesterday afternoon. On a side note, I thought it was kinda cool that it was leap day. After all, getting your hair cut is almost like a leap of faith *wink*. As the time neared, I was more anxious than excited. Partly because of the thought of losing my hair, but also because of fear that I won’t be able to communicate properly and my hair would turn into a disaster. I had a picture of what I wanted, but still. As a last resort, I asked a friend to accompany me. HE was sweet enough to actually say yes.

To cut a long story short since the point of this post isn’t the process itself (I think the hairdresser merits her own post — a review post. Later.), got my hair cut. It turned out so well that every single person at the salon agreed that I looked “trés jolie” (that’s like 6 or 7 people, 8 if you count me, but I’m biased).

Strangely enough, I did not weep as the hairdresser cut my hair and I did not miss my long tresses. Also, there was no sense of relief, and somehow I had completely forgotten to relate it with my hearbreak. This morning when I woke up and saw myself in the mirror, I had completely forgotten how I looked like yesterday. It was as if I had always had this hairstyle, and I loved the person looking back at me.

In retrospect, perhaps I had seen myself in my mind with this hairstyle all along. And I didn’t need a haircut to divert me from the heartbreak because the wounds have healed. Instead of giving me a diversion, the hairdresser had simply cut her way to reveal what I did not manage to see before.

A beautiful, happy, very much loved little me.

Day 8 of #16Days of Activism Against Gender Violence

Originally posted on the WCRC blog but I thought it would be nice to have it here too.

As the old adage goes, better late than never. I do apologize for not having done this earlier (say at the start of the 16 Days).

What is the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence?

It is a campaign started by the Center for Women’s Global Leadership at Rutgers University in 1991, which has since been adopted and promoted by many different organizations around the world. The official Rutgers website can be found at http://16dayscwgl.rutgers.edu/

When is it held?

The 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence starts on November 25th, which is the International Day Against Violence Against Women, and ends on December 10th, International Human Rights Day.

In between those dates, there are other significant dates such as:

What is being done and what difference does it make?

Since this is a global campaign, a whole lot of things are being done all around the world. Like all kinds of campaigns, the first goal is to get as many people as possible aware of what is happening. The more people know, the more likely they are to work on the issue and/or to give support to organizations that are working “on the ground”, so to say. And when we have a large group of people with a common goal, it is very likely that the goal would be achieved.

How to get involved?

With all the different things being done, it can indeed be overwhelming and one might feel lost. Here are the things I would personally suggest:

  1. Find out more about the campaign and read up some facts on gender violence (and related issues). I would start with the official website for the 16 Days followed by the UN Women’s Say No website. Each of these websites are also well linked to many different “actions”.
  2. Do sign the pledge at the We Will Speak Out coalition website. The WWSO is “a coalition of like minded church groups, international aid agencies and an alliance of Christians who together commit themselves to see the end of sexual violence across communities around the world.” The WCRC is a member of this coalition.
  3. Devote time to reflect and pray on the issue, either personally or in a group. Many resources are available for this purpose, such as this, this, or this.
  4. Take time to download, order and use the resources that the WCRC has such as the two gender manuals (here and here) and the Carribean women Bible Study (more info here).
  5. Follow the different organizations and individuals supporting the campaign on Twitter (here) — and join them!

Update, s’il vous plaît?

Yes, yes, I know… I haven’t been updating in the longest of times. I’m sorry. I’ve been busy… and yes, I know that’s a common excuse, so common in fact that a lot of times it’s not even true, but I can assure you it has been quite true to me.

Traveling, for one, is something that I’ve been doing quite a lot the past two weeks or so.

It started with a trip to London on November 17th and 18th. This was mainly for work, but I got an extra day to sight-see, which included going on the London Eye and watching The Lion King musical *wink*

Then, I went to the Netherlands, namely Amsterdam and Arnhem between November 21-23 to visit some friends. November 21st of course was a horrible misty day, but luckily the 22nd was bright and shiny, and the 23rd was only a bit misty.

On November 28 I went for a day trip to Bern for the Onion Market… which you can read all about over at the “work” blog (hey, it was an “official intern assignment”, okay?!)

And in between traveling of course I had work to do. Duh.

And I have more traveling in store in the near future, namely:

On December 7th & 8th I’ll be going to Basel on a business trip to attend a presentation by Marie Claire Barth-Frommel (that’s Karl Barth-the theologian’s daughter-in-law)… and then On December 15th to 19th, I’ll be going to Edinburgh to learn about the Scottish Reformation (well, that, among other things).

I’m considering going to Montreux for the Christmas Market this coming Saturday, but my economic condition might not be too happy about that. LOL. We’ll see. Otherwise I might be doing a movie marathon again like I did last week, cause I have a movie pass (where you pay a monthly fee and can watch as many movies as you like) so that won’t affect my economy!

Other than travel plans, I have choir practices (with a carol service on the 11th, which is also the day of the Escalade) AND there’s the Indonesian Christian Community Christmas on the 10th. So you see, my schedule’s pretty packed there.

And I have French class tonight. Duh. And so, detailed updates shall come later. To JUMP’s owner, don’t worry, JUMP’s fine and went with me to all my trips 🙂

Ciao, ciao!

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