Terpujilah wahai engkau ibu bapak guru......
Engkau bagai pelita dalam kegelapan
Engkau laksana embun penyejuk dalam kehausan
Engkau patriot pahlawan bangsa, tanpa tanda jasa
[Hymne Guru - Pahlawan Tanpa Tanda Jasa]

An unresolved question to ponder:

--- Do I prefer to be one of the most valuable contributors without medals of honour of this country by being a teacher at schools with a low pay and stressful working hours, or do I want to cash some jackpots and do the same job but to some rich individuals with flexible hours and me as my own boss? ---

Okay, it started like a week ago. It was Friday morning when I only had to teach 3 classes, each for about an academic hour. So I'd got plenty of time in between the classes (like 2 hours) and as usual, I prepared a novel and a must-bring discman from home. Reading while listening to the Massive Attack CD, I did not hear nor realise that 3 people were rushing in. It took me a while to get to know that the big bosses fr0m Jakarta, Mr. Marcell and Mrs. Silvy, were the ones who came in with Mr. Win. I heard before that Pak Marcell did not like any of his staff spent their time doing nothing unrelated to school, class materials or any other education stuff, but I did not take any serious threat in it. I'm a parttimer, paid by hours, and whatever I do in the while when I do not have classes is on my own risk. As long as my responsibility in teaching and administration are clear and done, there shouldn't be any problem of using my free unpaid time by reading a novel, right?

Anyway, they did not seem to care about it but I then quietly turned off my discman and closed my novel when Bu Silvy took a seat near me and seemingly wanted to chat with me. She started the conversation with Pak Marcell's lost of cellphone a few weeks ago, which made me enthuasiastically retell my own lost of the same item. Yofie, my partner in teaching 4A, was there, too.. but Bu Silvi and I were the most dominant chatters while Pak Marcel and Pak Win were discussing something looking-like a serious matter in the other corner.
The chitchat switched smoothly from one topic to the others until Bu Silvi asked my opinion about the institution's syllabus of the year. Truthfully as always, I told her my objections of some inconsistence and target-missing items of the test/lesson materials we have at that moment. I showed her some proof which she succeeded to see later on, and gave my suggestions on how they should be compiled. She agreed with them and promised to get some changes in it soon.


Statement letters of willingness to continue working at MLT were distributed not long after and I eagerly wrote my name and details there to state that I was NOT going to prolong my contract the next academic year. You know how I love teaching very much but it's killing me everyday that I have to wake up at some stupid 4.30-o'clock time in the morning. I plan to get the most use of my time so effectively that I can earn more Rupiahs without getting stressed out. So I think that was the best to let go the schools and go for some private teachings more.

I reread the letter of agreement and couldn't find any not willing to continue statement there. *raising one eyebrow*

I met Rina at Tunjungan Plaza last weekend and asked her about the missing NO. She's known that I've always wanted to quit like some considerable time during my teaching period these almost 2 years. She said she did not know if there was some other form of statement with a not willing part in it. But she asked me to postpone returning the paper back until she talked with Pak Win first about my quitting.


Yesterday I was sitting in the dining room of the St. Carolus high school with Rina and Pak Win when he then started to express his disappointment for having me quit. He said that Pak Marcell and Bu Silvy asked him again about my willingness in doing full time there (last year I was offered the same thing but I refused it, which later on I was very grateful I did, witnessing Rina getting too overwhelmed with her 15 classes a week and her oh so many correction papers to bring home). I told him I was sorry I couldn't, that I cared about my health more than money (oh yes, that's a very basic lie, hehe) and that I was just not a morning person. I might have been born for teaching, but obviously absolutely not in Indonesian schools. At least until the government changes the school time to a later logical time, which I doubt it would. :P

Pak Win explained that Bu Silvy was impressed with my being critical in the test/lesson materials and wished me to be the material developer for Surabaya region, so that we wouldn't have to depend on Jakarta's office to get the full materials. Thus I would spend probably half of my time at the office compiling written tests/lesson plans and wouldn't have to teach a lot of classes like Rina does now.
Okay, that's quite an offer. But no, thanks. I know the application wouldn't be that precise as promised. Yet I had this feeling to tease Mr. Win.

Me: Will I get my own room with an air-conditioner in it?
Mr. Win: Yes, you will. You'll have a comfortable cool room if you want.
Me: Will I get a good pay for it?
Mr. Win: Yes, definitely. You're a good asset for our company.
Me: Will I have morning working hours or later?
Mr. Win: I can set your schedules to later hours.
Me: I love teaching the students but hate to do the test correction. Will you make a specific department for it?
Mr. Win: [laughing softly] No, I'm afraid I can't possibly do it.
Me: Will I get a massager chair as advertised at plazas?
Mr. Win: [laughing hard] Carla, you're impossible!

I told him I really had to consider everything but I was almost 100% sure that I'd leave the job. Even as a parttimer. Except if they can get me that massager chair. :D
Last week, 4th grade elementary students

Vendra: Miss Carla, Miss Carla.. What is the English translation of "Dasi dan Kursi"?
Other students laughed.
Me: (frowning while surpressing my own laugh) Vendra!!! Watch your mouth!"

Dasi means tie [pronounced tai in Indonesian, which means shit].
Dan means and [pronounced en].
Kursi means chair [pronounced cher].
The pronunciation of dan kursi combined is encer, which in Indonesian means liquid.

Can you guess the whole meaning of the phrase?


Today, 2nd grade of Senior High School

We were having an oral test, where the students should answer three out of five questions we gave them. Indonesian language was forbidden. Let it be the rule, some spontanous Indonesian expressions still came out of some of my students.

Question: Do you want to be a president? Why/Why not? What do you want to be when you're grown up? Why/why not?

Eric: I don't want to be a president because apa ya.. because of the hard work and the people untrusting the profession.
Me: Eric, there is no apa ya in English. (apa means what, by the way).
Eric: Oh sorry.. What ya?
Me: .........................................
Me: So what do you want to be when you're grown up?
Eric: I want to be a programmer.
Me: Why?
Eric: Because.. apa ya.. oh.... what ya?
Me: .........................................

to be continued...
I was lookin' back to see if you were lookin back at me
To see me lookin back at you
[Safe from Harm - Massive Attack]

I made this one. What do you think?

I had a dreamless sleep when
You woke me up with sweet kisses and
a tight hug from behind

Flowery heavenly view rushed in
Defeating my heavy eyes.
It seemed like forever to recall
The last time I smiled so wide..

You changed it into laughs in seconds
Took me to the highest level of intimacy and love
I'd dreamt my whole life
Left me stunned so long




Then I was no longer numb
Coldness took over
Creeping all over my bare body
Still idling I realised
You were no longer there
Sharing your majestic warmth

I reached out in the dark but
Nothing to see
Nothing to hear
Nothing to touch
Nothing to feel
at all..

I couldn't feel the solid ground
Couldn't feel the breeze of the air
Couldn't feel the sun and light
It was all black and silent

I'm lost

Prambanan Temple.

Isn't it awesome? The weather was fucked up at that time that it blew up my intention to take the famous sunset pics of Prambanan temple. But looking at this pic I took, I'm not less disappointed. It looks a bit spooky, don't you think? Try to remember Hogwarts. :D

Anyway, Prambanan temple was told to be built by a young prince that wished to marry a very beautiful princess from another kingdom called Rara Jonggrang. The princess unfortunately was not willing to take his proposal but her father insisted her to accept it instead, for the sake of getting two big forces into one and avoiding a war between both kingdoms. Being a clever princess as she was, she asked the young prince to build a thousand temples in one night. He promised he would and started building with the help of demons and gods he was friends with.

The construction did not seem to be a hard one for he had already built 999 temples before the dawn. The princess soon ordered all women in her kingdom to work with their rice processor (traditional, of course), hitting it with big sticks in rythm. That tricked the cocks and they started to make sound of kukuruyuk (cock-a-doodle doo, in English) eventhough the sun had not risen yet.

The young prince was very upset and mad that he destroyed almost all his temples into pieces. The ones left were 3 main temples of three great gods, i.e. Shiwa (god of destroyer), Brahma (god of creator), and Wishnu (god of protection) and their vehicles temples. Later on he knew that the princess cheated on him so that he turned her into a statue, looking just like her.


Baby Krishna.

In Wayang world, Khrisna is described as a very smart guy, it started when he was still a little child. He's a decendant of some god and therefore inherited a super power of noticing a bad intention of people around him.

One day, a baby-milking woman (not his own mother) was about to feed him. Some bad guys who tried to harm him put some potion on her nipple where Khrisna should drink his milk from, so that the little poor baby would die instantly afterwards. Sounding impossible as it is, he knew it. To get himself out of death, he bit the woman's nipple so hard it was cut from her breast. Bleeding heavily, she slowly died due to losing a considerable amount of blood. Khrisna himself was safe.

I heard this story some while back when I was at school learning our culture and I remember I admired his courage and brilliant brain for detecting the danger. It was like years ago and I completely forgot it until a guide explained the story to some local tourists near me. A different thought I was having then was: Why didn't he also die from tasting and most probably swallowing the potion he had in his mouth?

It's still an interesting story to discuss, though.


Once upon a time, there was a little girl who dreamt to go and visit all places in the world. She did the best she could to make it happen. She worked very hard, almost forgetting her own health, to achieve her oh-so many dreams. Apparantly so far she made her way through traveling to some cool places.. and there she was.. smiling wide for her victory.

I can tell that she is actually the real winner of all.

Indonesian people are very keen in generalising things, especially when it comes to gender issues. I'll narrow it to girls' expected behaviours and looks at this occasion. Here are some examples.

  1. Girls are pretty when they have long black shiny hair.
  2. The lighter your tone of skin, they more beautiful you are.
  3. Guys are identic with dirt and girls with cleanliness.
  4. Girls should be nice, sweet, calm and polite.
  5. Girls should not wear too skin-revealing clothes as it may attract guys sexually, therefore when there's any sexual abduction to that kind of girl, the fault should not be in the guy's hand, but hers.
  6. etc, etc.
Traveling with two other girls of office mates proved the third point of those general views up there wrong.


I, as well the other workmates, know Jus as the sweetest, calmest, most well-behaved girl in the office. She's a year older than I am and always shows a great maturity to herself and others. Nevertheless, she made me and Pyor pretty annoyed by her walking around our room wearing her sandals, which she used as well outside the room and stepped on dirts and muds, to keep her feet clean. Too much reason for her own cleanliness, they left trails of dirt in the floor and small carpet in front of the shower room. Pyor and I took an action and made this rule of "leaving sandals outside the room" that she had to obey, and it solved the problem.

She doesn't seem that clean anymore, right now. Hehe..


Yes, me. Well, everyone knows I'm reckless, sloppy, clumsy, untidy and a big bunch of other negativities in me. *lol* That already proved statement number 3 a wrong one. But then again, no one takes me as an example of a typical Indonesian girl. :P

Anyway, as usual, I found bruises on my thighs, arms and ankles during the trip as the result of me bumping things in my way; Jus got angry cause I always put money on the sheet of the bed; both Jus and Pyor were always amazed everytime they asked me to plan the traveling destinations and I always answered: "Do I ever plan anything at all? We'll decide when we're on the road."


And ladies and gentlemen, let's welcome our star of untidiness this season! Needless to explain much, the story is just as simple as Pyor forgot to bring the most important thing in traveling -- a toothbrush, forgot to buy it the next day she arrived, and after buying it on the third day, she postponed to use it as soon as she got in to the shower room with a reason that she was going to eat anyway so what was the use of using it right away?

*Jus and I threw ourselves on our bed and rollingly laughed our arses out!*

3 days without brushing teeth! No wonder we smelled something weird all the time. Hehehehehe.....
I don't know why my monthly period always chooses to visit me in the very few times of the year when I am on vacation. It happened last December, last November and in some other traveling activities I made. It happened again this time.

Tiredness was what I felt after my Prambanan and Ratu Boko trip yesterday. Not to mention the heavy rain and the long-waiting period of Princess Pyor to arrive. Tragically, when I actually needed the rest the most, I couldn't close my eyes and sleep. I was chatting with Jus until 3 o'clock in the morning.

I was not in the mood. We moved to another inn called Monica (well I could spend hours to list you nasty hotels' names in Yogyakarta) as the girls do not want to sleep in separated rooms. Monica hotel happened to have a bigger room in which an extra bed could be fixed with a reasonable rate. It was clean, that was all that mattered. I agreed to move in.

It took us half of the day just to check out from Bladok to this Monica hotel and I already felt weak of the heavy flow inside. I was certainly not in the mood to do anything, sleepy, dizzy and a bit temperamental in a way. I just hope I didn't say anything rude to my traveling companions. But after some discussions, Pyor and Jus agreed to go visit places without me. They rarely go to Yogyakarta that they were pretty much eager to see and do touristy things around like visiting Kraton (the palace), Kota Gede (a village or area that produces the best silver products in Yogyakarta, riding a horse cart, seeing a batik making procedure and just a lot of other stuffs I was not a bit interested in doing. I go to Yogya quite frequently.. guiding some tourists or just hanging out with some friends.

12.00 noon.
Pyor: I wanna do some shopping on Malioboro street this afternoon.
Jus and me: Yeah, me too.
Pyor: Ok, so wait for us, Carla! Don't go shopping by yourself!!!
Me: Fine. When will you be back here?
Pyor: In about 2 hours, we'll have lunch together and go shopping, or to Kota Gede.
Me: Cool, that sounds great.

I woke up and tried to know what the time was. But I had no watch nor mobile phone to check. Lazily I washed my face and decided to go to an expensive internet cafe that I was actually reluctant to go, just to check the time and emails for a while.
It was four o'clock, for heaven's sake!!! Why haven't the girls been back yet?
I was very hungry and thought I would just have something to eat in a nearby restaurant. Just then, a blurred vision of Pyor's darkened face with anger and childish frown appeared in my head. "I told you to wait for us to have lunch!" I imagined she said.

I decided to postpone to eat, but I went to Malioboro street to kill the time by browsing at some pretty cool handmade accessories and buying myself a big bottle of Aqua to release myself from the draining. I didn't go far but without realising it, I already bought a Dream Teather shirt my brother asked me to buy and two pairs of lovely sandals for me and my sis. I forced myself to stop shopping when I saw the clock in a shop struck at 5 and just went back to the hotel to check if my friends were there to wait for me for some eating outing. I was starving as hell.

They weren't there.

Shit, where the hell were they going?
Again, I thought I would just go out and get myself some food. But it was just this custom of Indonesians that Pyor and Jus already showed themselves, that we needed to be together all the time.. the three of us. It wasn't my style at all -- to be dependent to each other's companion to please ourselves but I saw their disappointed looks earlier when I refused to have breakfast and travel to some places with them. This is not my own journey, I thought, I should be more considerate. So shutting all my senses from my grumbled stomach, I took my book and CD player and read in the balcony alone.

It was half dark when Pyor and Jus arrived, tired and sweaty.

"Hey, two hours, huh?" I greeted them.

"Well Pyor said you wouldn't mind not going to Kota Gede with us, so we went there alone," Jus explained.

"Then don't tell me that I should wait both of you for lunch and shopping," I frowned and added, "Have you eaten?"

"Yeah, Pyor did. I didn't cause it was gudeg and we already ate it last night."

At that very moment, I just felt like choking Pyor.


Jus received some sms-es from back home. Mostly were from her mother informing exchanging Surabaya's andYogyakarta's weather forecast, and from Pyor telling that she was going to join us the next day. We were at Prambanan temple when Justine was busy with her cellphone answering the smses.

The Prambanan visit was not as fun as we expected before when the rain poured the earth heavily. But Jus and I tried our best to have fun and be happy in our wet clothes.

Pyor changed her plan. She informed us that she was going to come by train that evening, instead of the next day. I asked Jus to tell her that I'd pick her upat the station when she arrived. She just needed to tell us what time she would arrive. 8 o'clock. Cool.

We continued our way to Ratu Boko Palace with our rented motorbike that I rode. It was almost dark when we were there, and as any other places in Yogya, this one was not that satisfying either in my eyes. I don'tknow why.. I just don't love Yogya that much inspite of the fact that I had some cool memories here.

The rain got heavier when we were on our way back to the hotel. I was all wet and cold and shivering hard when the rain turned out to be like heavy big sharp needles hitting my face skin. I decided to stop at a restaurant and had dinner there.

The food tasted great, but Jus complained again that it was too expensive (hehe..).

Well there was still some rain when we were on the road again. I just let it be or otherwise we would never get back into the city (Prambanan is outside Yogyakarta).

Soaked, tired, sneezing and weak, we rushed showering as soon as we arrived in our hotel. Jus gave me someVitamin C supplement after I finished showering and I was about to pick Pyor up. There was something that prevented me to go to the station right away. I smsed Pyor where she was.

"I'm in Solo," replied her. And that should be an hour long from Yogya! That was 8 o'clock and if I didn't ask her first she wouldn't tell us she would be late.

9 o'clock.
SMS- Pyor, where are you?
No reply.

9.30 pm.
Jus: I'm getting tired and sleepy. Why hasn't she arrived yet?
Me: Dunno.
I was also super tired and sleepy.

A while later, about 10 o'clock:
Pyor: hi I arrived. where are you?


What should I call it? Superb lateness?
9 February 2005

After a long endless discussion with Mariza about going to Borneo this week, Justine and I cancelled it for the tickets were not getting cheaper. Mariza went alone there to see her lover, while Jus and I deciced (just) the day before the vacation itselt, to go to Yogyakarta once again. We went to the train station to get us tickets but alas.. none were available. We decided to take a bus instead in the morning.

The fast bust we were ought to take turned out to be always full. We waited for 2 hours in terminal until one man suggested us to stand in the other direction in order to get a seat. I thought he was honest so I took Jus there.

Just in our way, a guy asked me: "Would you like a taxi service, miss? To the airport, maybe?"

"No, thanks," I replied.

I walked farther and glanced back if Jus followed me. But no, she was there talking with the taxi driver who previously offered his service. Ok, I thought, it shouldn't be taking long. But no, it took quite a while. What the hell was she discussing with that guy? I wondered.

It was then I saw the bus we wanted. I turned at Jus and called her as loudly as I could. I wanted to check if it was the right bus. She didn't seem to hear or notice me. Wow, that taxi driver must be quite amusing. Hehehe...

Well I looked at the other direction where we were formerly standing, to see some people running and rushing their way toward the bus.

Shit, it was it!

I called Jus again and started running as fast as I could. The only most important thing in my mind was to get 2 seats for both of us or we wouldn't ever get into Yogyakarta! Panting, I was one of the first people who got in front of the bus' door. Many folks tried to push me from behind so that I could't make to get into the bus with my very very big and heavy bag on my back. I told them to stop and jumped in as best as I could. I succeeded.

I took 2 seats in the third row from the front door and waited for Jus. After really a while, she got in, smiling sheepishly.

I said, "I thought you wouldn't want to leave your taxi driver."
According to dictionary.com, art is the conscious production or arrangement of sounds, colors, forms, movements, or other elements in a manner that affects the sense of beauty, specifically the production of the beautiful in a graphic or plastic medium.

Question: So what's the purpose of making an artistic piece?
Carla says: To satisfy the esthetical areas of our senses -- sight, hearing, touch.

Question: Is art a defined agreement-based piece of work?
Carla says: Absolutely not. It's very abstract in perception indeed. What looks good for you doesn't always look good for other people.

Question: When you make a piece of art, does it need an approval from the authoritive ones?
Carla says: Hell no! It's a piece to be enjoyed by individuals. And never depends on the crowds' opinion about it. Whether it is artistic or not, the unique art-lovers that see it are the ones who decide.

Well, to hell what I say. I still need to stick on the what-so-called "agreed" art in my office. Make simple wallpapers with lines only and complete the target. See if you can sell them online.