LAlapsambEL and the City

I had multiple interesting things yesterday. And I should have written the experience on the same day. Oh well, I can’t blame HBO movies that kept me awake until my bedtime.

So, yesterday I was in a discussion where two foreigners who have lived and worked in Indonesia for a long time -much longer than my career- share their experience of working here. One of them is going to leave the country soon. The other one said, “You cannot escape this country. I’ve seen so many goodbyes and yet they come back in 5 years or so.” This guy doesn’t answer anything I could remember. He might be thinking about it. He loves Indonesian food and has worked with Indonesians in the past 10 years.

The other guy then explained what happened to him when he came back to his country after working in Indonesia. He talked about how he can see his country as a foreigner. The exact same thing I experienced when coming back from AFS year in the US a long time ago. He then realized that people in his country were not as nice and that he preferred working with Indonesians.

What he did next was to set up a totally different business in his home country, while maintaining his work here in Indonesia. He never got rest when going home, but all he needed was a change from his “thinking work” in Indonesia to “physical work” in his home country. I admire him for doing this. I myself always have a mind-battle between the “businesswoman” and “adventurous traveler” part of me. I see myself as both and today I still have not connected between the two and they still push each other to different directions most of the time, but I’m working on it. This conversation lead me to think about it again.

After the discussion, I was blog-hopping for some traveling information when I landed on this website. The author does RTW (Round The World) Trip every year, while maintaining her career. RTW trip is something I want to do at some point in my life, which totally makes sense, since traveling is one of my priorities in life. Yet, I have higher priorities over traveling, with ‘being together with my husband’ topping the list, followed by building career and ‘independent nest’. This reminds me of my plan once again, that at some point I may just buy the ticket and go. At least that’s what happened with me getting married and applying for MBA. I just found myself doing it.

I know this is kinda late, but it’s still January anyway. I thought I already had a wrap up every year, but apparently this was my last wrap up, which was written 3 years ago. Jadi, apa yang terjadi di 2013?

  • Family

Since I got married in Dec 2012, I had a totally new experience on this. Di akhir tahun lalu, gue pindah untuk tinggal di apartemen bareng Erga. Ternyata punya rumah sendiri itu jadi banyak yang harus dikerjain, mulai dari bersih-bersih rumah, cuci piring, masak, sampai mengurus suami. Biarpun gue kerja, berhubung apartemen gue ga gede dan belom punya anak, sampai sekarang sih belom kepikiran pakai pembantu. Kecuali pakai laundry kiloan, haha (hey, we don’t have space for a washing machine, anyway). Untungnya, Erga juga mau bersih-bersih dan masak juga, jadi tinggal gantian.

What’s the plus point for us? Our cooking skills significantly increased! Name any dish that has ready-to-use sauces / seasoning and we can cook it :D

  • Career

After a maneuver to the other side of marketing last year and rigorous job searching to move back to brand management earlier this year, I finally started a new job in June 2013. With all it has, I can say that this is a step up from my previous positions. Although it’s not perfect, it certainly enriched my experience.

What’s next? Probably similar position in an environment that suits my personality better. I have just realized what I really enjoy in working. Having tried doing another job and projects, I can see myself still enjoying brand management in the next several years. I will certainly use all my skills, even though 5 years ago I didn’t even think I would have achieved what I have today. The world has its way to develop, I just ensure that I contribute as well.

  • Health

Nah, sepetinya ini hal yang bisa dibilang agak mundur di 2013. Di 2012 alias sebelum married, gue rutin olahraga minimal 3 kali seminggu, seperti capeng lainnya yang mau terlihat top di hari pernikahannya. Setelah married? Iya sih, gue tinggal turun dari apartment buat lari / renang / fitness, tapi maleeees banget. Sempet nunggu Erga, tapi dia malah lebih males dari gue.

Things get better menjelang akhir tahun, di mana gue menemukan geng ibu2 yoga Kalibata City yang aktif latihan tiap Minggu pagi. Latihannya juga lebih serius dari yoga di kantor lama gue dulu. Sekarang abis yoga bisa sakit2 otot gue karena dilipet2, tapi jadi lebih lentur juga. At least gue olahraga seminggu sekali, dan kalo bolos gw merasa lebih berkewajiban buat ‘mengganti jadwal’ dengan olahraga juga, hehe. Tinggal latihan cardio (lari / renang) yang kudu ditambah, and I can get back to my college-days fitness level.

Oya, tahun 2013 ini juga gw mengalami kepala bocor gara2 kena besi penyangga AC pas bersih2 balkon. Sebenernya cuma luka biasa, tapi karena di kepala, darahnya langsung netes dan bikin panik, hahaha. Langsung deh ke dokter apartemen dan alhamdulillah sudah sembuh sekarang.

  • Financials

After successfully buying our dream apartment in 2012, we continued paying the loan this year. Paying it every month really feels like sucking our income. But living in our own apartment is surely invaluable ;) I also got a new job with higher position, which means higher income and a company car including gas, yeay! Overall we’re doing well, just need to watch out those eat-out bills anytime none of us feels like cooking, hehe.

  • Traveling

This is a bit on a downside in 2013, since my personal traveling budget is now divided into 2, while I didn’t increase the amount. Still, I managed to visit Hong Kong, Shenzhen, Singapore, Malaysia, Malang, Bromo, Bali, and Belitung in 2013. Some were paid by my employer, but of course the best are the independent travels I arranged by myself. ;)

2013 highlight was zoo animals. I managed to watch and capture pictures of walrus & penguins in Ocean Park HK, nocturnal animals in SG Night Zoo, flamingos & African monkeys in Batu Secret Zoo, and tarsius in Belitung. They’re certainly not as wild as dolphins, white-butt monkey, tarsius, and komodo dragons that I met in their real habitat back in 2012. Still, it’s a fun experience trying to capture their active life.

Diving-wise, Erga got his PADI Open Water license in September, which enables us to be buddy for life, yay! His exam was in P. Seribu that I joined as well, so we had fun with the group that didn’t think that we’re married, haha. Then, we explored a wreck in Belitung and that’s all I had for diving.

    • Others

I started to take part in a book project about Jakarta. Currently, it’s not finished yet so I really hope this will be continued and finished in 2014. This project was initiated by an ex-colleague in collaboration with many people. Hopefully this can be finished with commitment of everyone.

On that social media project, it’s currently on halt. Need to figure out here and there to make it work.

Overall, 2013 was a thinking, planning, and transition year. The biggest change that happened was in career with my move back to brand management, family life with my new ‘wife’ status, as well as the preparation to start my MBA classes in 2014. After the grande 2012, I can accept if 2013 might not be as memorable. The most important thing is to make progress in every year that we pass. :)

Kalau kalian temenan Facebook sama gw, mungkin sadar atas pergantian status gw dari ‘in a relationship’ ke tahap berikutnya. Yup, Januari kemaren Erga & gw sudah melaksanakan tahap lamaran, dan Insya Allah we will be getting married this December!

Kita berdua sebenernya sudah memulai proses persiapan buat resepsi pernikahan kita, bahkan sebelum lamaran, jadi udah mulai merasa ribetnya milih vendor yang akan kita pakai. Untungnya, banyak banget review vendor pernikahan di Jakarta, yang ditulis oleh orang-orang yang sudah pernah nyiapin pernikahannya sendiri tentunya, di forum ataupun blog. Nah, karena gw ‘ngambil’ info yang sudah ada, gw juga berniat membalas dengan ‘ngasih’ info yang gw punya.

Kalo cerita ke temen-temen gw, banyak yang bilang kok nyiapin nikahan aja ribet amat. Gw + Erga sebagai pasangan emang niat banget nyiapin pernikahan kita, karena masih lama sih, jadi masih idealis, pengennya macem2, hehe. Buat gw, pernikahan adalah project seperti yang gw kerjakan di kantor, jadi kudu direncanakan dan dilaksanakan sebaik mungkin. Buat Erga, ini art project yang kudu dikonsep sebaik mungkin juga. Jadi, silakan tunggu tulisan-tulisan gw soal persiapan pernikahan, yah!

This is my first post in 2012, yay! Biasanya, tiap taun baru, gw menulis recap apa yang terjadi dengan gw di taun sebelumnya, dan rencana-rencana gw di taun berikutnya. Nah, di tahun baru kemarin, I had a significant life experience, yang membuat pikiran dan emosi gw sering banget nggak stabil. Gw share-nya bentar lagi ya, after I have things kind of more settled, hehe.

Setiap taun, pasti salah satu resolusi gw adalah menulis lebih banyak, termasuk di blog. Alas, it never happened :mrgreen: Now that I have more spare time than usual, gw pengen nulis lebih banyak, especially on my wedding preparation (yippie!) and traveling experience. Like I once wrote, I have received a lot of knowledge from the world, and if I keep on feeling selfish for only keeping them for myself. So, I hope this year I can share more thing in here, tweet more (I already did, yay!).

Gw juga baru renew “About” page, dan mencoba “narik” posts di blog lama. It doesn’t seem to be working, though :( Anyway, enjoy my writings and drop some comments if you have any thoughts about them. Cheers!

Weightless

Posted on: July 12, 2011

The sky is the limit
And I just wanna flow
Free as a spirit on a journey of hope
Cut the strings and let me go
I’m weightless, I’m weightless
Millions of balloons tethered to the ground
Weight of the world tries to hold us down
Cut the strings and let me go
I’m weightless, I’m weightless
I’m weightless, I’m weightless, I’m weightless…

All the things I held in my fist
If I don’t let go, I don’t exist
They’ve become the things that define me
How I look and the things to buy me
That’s not important anymore
I feel me rising off the floor
Light as a feather, I’m carefree
I’m weightless…

Most of the time, I will have this series of decision making before I finally act on something. At first, I usually feel I need to do something. This feeling can be extremely excited or extremely disappointed. At this point, I don’t decide right away on something, as I’m afraid it’s only a sudden emotion. When my mind can come back finally, then I think on the benefit vs cost of it. Then, before I act on what I have thought, I’d try to sense if I would make the right decision for me by doing the action. This is the point where my thinking, experience, info, feeling, and common sense would blend together. Sometimes, I will loop back and forth between rethinking and resensing. However, the feeling part can only come back after I act, which might only be the first step of actions. And before the next action, of course I will have the feeling part first.

I know this might be a boring post. I’m just writing my random thoughts. :)

Women

Posted on: March 31, 2011

I’m grateful to have a chance to learn about women.

In my office, I see career women doing their best for their work, no matter how difficult it is. I don’t know how they are at home, but at the office they’re confident and responsible with their decisions.

During my commuting time, I see women proudly going to work, doing their best to look beautiful, even though some fall asleep during the travel, might be tired from doing their job and serving their family – no time for rest.

Some of these working moms call their children during the day in between their busy meetings or in the evening on their way home or at night when they have to go for out-of-town business. They work hard to handle their double roles, yet they handle them very well. I guess this is what our modern society expects to women: to work with the same quality with men, yet handling responsibility to take care of the family.

Now, let’s look at other kind of women. My current job is handling products for women. Of course, I need to understand my consumer. With this, I get a chance to see women with different role from what I wrote above: housewives. Since I haven’t got a chance to have this role on my own, I didn’t know how their life is like. Here, I learn what they feel and what they do, what makes them happy or sad. A lot of people think that being a housewife is easy, happy, not frustrating, etc. But when I hear from them, I see that they work as hard – to keep their husbands happy with their appearance, food they cook, house they clean up, to take care their children well, or even to ensure the money their husband gives is enough for all the household needs.

Doing their not-as-easy roles, yet a lot of them feel they are nothing compared to men, or even to career women. I think this world is not built by only some group of people, but by each of us. We need everyone to feel as important. Women – together with men – build the world. We might have different roles, but it is not our right to undermine roles of others.

LAlapsambEL tweets as @MpokElla

  • Musikal Sekolahan bagus! Love the music, choreography, and the talents of course. Dan masih bisa dapet tiket H-3. Ga nyesel spontan beli :D 4 months ago
  • Swimming! My classic Saturday morning ;) (at Kalibata City Green Palace) [pic] — path.com/p/dcChu 4 months ago
  • Transportation development in Indonesia is super slow. How come we have mobile internet earlier than prepaid card for public transport? 4 months ago

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