New Pages: February 2006

Monday, February 20, 2006

Ibu Ayu and Ibu Itha (two superwomen)

the Transportation & Highway expert (Mr. Kojima & Nagai)


The Brain of Study Team

with my cool deputyteamleaders

Saturday, February 18, 2006

(Supposed to be) Last day with JICA Mamminasata

this was taken just before we left. Some local staff had left, so here was I, only lady in the party. on my right is the team leader, left is the deputy team leader.

My only aim was to finish my leftover tasks from Mr. Koizumi and Mr. Watanabe’s Decree (well it’s Presidential Decree Draft, not his decree..but whatever)
I have to transfer some of tasks to other people, since today is my last day.

I did that.

Eventually, Ibu Itha asked me to accompany Mr. Koizumi (our team leader which I always afraid of) to ASKINDO (Cocoa Association of Indonesia). This was my first time to be with him and in fact my first time to have conversation with him after 10 months working with this study team.

I am really grateful that I had that chance.
He is an extraordinary humble person with rich experiences in his professional life.
Just like the story of his 30 years old leather suitcase that he purchased in Rome and still accompany him everywhere he goes around the globe. He might looks old with his grey hair but he has such a big spirit in whatever and wherever his project is.

Passionate in his job maybe the most right expression.

I still can picture his thinking face when he was listening to vice chairman of Askindo Makassar explanation of undeveloped potentials of cocoa value added processing in Indonesia due to imbalanced public policy. On the way back, I learned that he was trying to learn what is actually the underlying problems and trying to figure out what he can do.

I asked him a question on how he can control himself (emotionally) in front of various people (which I found annoying and rude sometimes) in different cases since he’s been in more then 70 places around the globes since he joined Nippon Koei right after his graduation. “Vision what will happen 20 years after…” and you won’t be trapped in your condition right now (the last sentence is simplify with my own words).

I asked him what is his best project. He told me about the construction of DAM in Mekkong River, Vietnam, he joined in early 70s. He said, 30 years after he went there and saw the positive result of the project to the country and they can even export energy to Thailand and get foreign currency income from that project. “some happy tears ran out to see what I have done can contribute to many people”.

I asked him what he thinks of the project in Mamminasata right now. He only mentioned, first your people should define what is your value of happiness. Maybe having a good car is enough to make your people happy, maybe our (his) value of happiness is not what your people expected. We consultant can only offer you but at the end it’s your people who take the decision.

…at the end it is always like that with life, isn't it…

But in short, my 2 hrs trip with him was really rich. Listening (90% of the time just listened to his stories, 10 % me asking questions) to him on my last day of assignment made me feel all my anger, disappointment, bad images on JICA and whatever Japanese consultants are paid off.

Not just that.
Eventually, Mr. Okada and Mr. Watanabe with help from ibu Itha have arranged farewell party for me at Score-Panakukkang. They booked the VVIP seat with a pool table, and almost all people from office attended the party, even Mr. Koizumi. (He, as far as I know, doesn’t like to go out for party or karaoke, since from what I’ve heard he always utilizes his time effectively). Sadly, Ibu Agnes and Riesma could not attend due to some reasons.
I never know my two bosses do care for me. I was stubborn and too strong sometimes but the way they treated me on my farewell party really flattering.
Even Ibu Ayu from Dinas Tata Ruang Propinsi was there too. Rabiah, a good friend I got from these last 2 months seemed enjoy the party as well.
It is hard to describe the environment it just I AM really flattered with their appreciation on me.
Before everybody left, the Japanese members gave a what so called Japanese style salutation to me. They raised both hands, and said something and clapped their hands. I don't know how to describe my feeling but it was really nice.

Mr. O and Mr. W asked me to continue to Happy Puppy for karaoke, after everybody left. Thus three of us sang songs for 2 hrs, and again, I really appreciate how they really care about me.

I’ve learned many things from this study team, but I don’t want to be overwhelmed with those appreciation since I am still learning. Having Mr. Okada, Mr. Watanabe, Mr. Koizumi as my supervisors and ‘teachers’ is another fortune in my life, just like having many other persons who teach me many things in professional and personal live.

At this time I can tell myself, again, that sometimes when I walk down the road it might feel heavy and winding. But as I’ve passed it with God’s help, friends’ support and best effort I could give, those difficulties are converted into reward to me.

I prefer to say I am really grateful of those bitter, happy, difficult, rich experiences I got within these 10 months. And I know, this is not just for coincidence.

Thank you to Mr. Koizumi, Mr. Okada and Mr. Watanabe, Rabiah, Ibu Itha, Risma and Niar..and all friends in JICA-Mamminasata as well as Ibu Sri, Ibu Ayu and Pak Shafik.

I didn’t bring my camera but took some pictures with my mobile phone. Still finding ways to download it to my laptop. Will upload them as soon as possible.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Foe'. A character of fortune, accompanied with dragon and phoniex: power and beauty.

with all respects to Nio ancestors...this is the ancestors altar of Nio family ancestral house...

my Barong...not it's mine...not it's mine...!

people meet may join!

the main stage...look at those crowd! It is the same Jalan Sulawesi we often pass by!

watching gandrang bulo with friends...*it's hard to take a snap without them looking at me*

tao toaya band in front of Vihara Ibu Agung Bahari...tao toa means: old people

Cap Go Meh (15th day of Chinese New Year)

There has been banners about the Cap Go Meh event which would be held along Jalan Sulawesi at Sunday, 12th February 2006, which means last night.
Yesterday was it. 15th day of Chinese New Year or well known as Cap Go (15) Meh. Maybe you knew Lontong Capgomeh better then the Cap Go Meh itself…just like my coworker, Rabiah. “Saya kira itu jenis merek, cap ..apa gitu…” hahaha..I get her point directly, maybe she thought, there’s a lontong with brand ‘gomeh’ huehehe…

Reminds me of a sentence on a truck “be are me the”…was confused for a while, what is the meaning.

Well…you know what (if you are from Makassar) the writer wants to say “bi ar mi deh…” hehe….

Ok back to Cap Go Meh issue.

Knowing that event would be held from 19:30 – 00:00, my dad and me walked down the road to go to Jalan Sulawesi few hours after dinner. Why walking? (why asking? hehe..because, it is really not common for Indonesian to walk even thou for such short distance) The street was closed from any vehicles which is great!

We could see the crowd as we approached the street. First place to visit was Vihara Ibu Agung Bahari (Mazu Temple) at the corner of Jl. Serui and Jl. Sulawesi.
I can write down a lengthen complaints on how ugly the renovation of this temple…but this is not the time

At the front gate, five old men were playing music, I took short video with some pictures, unfortunately we cannot upload video in the blog.
We went upstairs where they’ve moved (one of the renovation stupidity) the gods from first floor to 2nd floor. Rooms were filled with incense smoke. 2nd floor is wide, with several columns decorated with red dragons.
At the center of the room there is an additional altar ( I didn’t see it during my last visit) accompanying the main altar which is full of red candles, fruits and cakes.
On the other side of the altar there was a small stage, with forest decoration. Several men in Bugis-Makassar dress were there with their traditional music instruments. Soon, four other men with similar dress started to pose at four wind-directions.
They were holding bamboo sticks going to dance “Gandrang bulo” (bamboo percussions)

We decided to go out after our eyes smarted from the smoke.

Walking up north, there were more and more people. My Dad told me that it was like that in old times. People (particularly singles) roam the street. Secluded ladies left their homes to meet their future husbands. That’s what I found last night. Well they might not be secluded ladies, but girls and boys were meeting up, somehow it is nice. My Dad met so many old acquaintances on that night.

An ancestral house, Nio ancestral house was open. I’ve longed to see the interior of this building. An old man was sitting in front of the gate. Eventually he is one of the family, I assume he is around 80 something. We stepped in and voila…it is really cool. I am so delighted. At the end of the house there is a room with tall black-wood table, with planks of ancestors names. I asked if there’s any possible to revisit the house, he said every first and fifth day of Chinese month the house shall be open.

There were three small stages and one big stage. Several barongsai (dragon dancer) were performing on the street. There were also other performance by local (non-chinese) people. It is great to see such mix audience, where around 40% of the audiences were non-chinese and the Chinese community also came from different type of people (youngsters, kids and elders)

Walked up further north, more and more people were coming into the street. We walked back home through Jalan Sumba and Lombok, passing by Dynasty Hotel. Eventually a dragon dancer group from the neighbouring temple were just caught in fight with another group. I don’t know the detail but all I know one of the member was hit at the nose. They kept saying, “it’s a Chinese who did that!!”. That statement shows there are still strong racial prejudices between Chinese and non-chinese in this city (can imagine if a chinese got hit by non-chinese in Cap Go Meh night?). Thanks to the police and security, the dispute didn’t continue.

As we reached home, I was all sweat. My Dad said it was like playing golf. Well, isn’t it good?
The night was still young (22:30) and dragon dance music still could be heard from distance. Until now, I still keep that happy feeling, a joy of seeing the culture is rejoice, the process of place making for people instead of cars, and a night of great walking trip with my Dad.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Mom's Vintage: aren't they cool?

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Hidden Treasure...

Last night I scooped in to my Mom's old collections.
They are cool!
These are some of those charming items which I've claimed (well yeah, my Mom has agreed...lala) as my favorite.
But out of those, the best is on top-left, made from animal bone combined with silver and on bottom-right, from elephant tusk with chinese oriental carving of two dragons and 'souw' (long live) character..what do you think? mom's favorite is on bottom-left: big black beads with gold paintings and top-middle: chocker made of translucent glass with paintings.

No wonder I have passion on such things, it's in the gene.

Friday, February 03, 2006


I don’t know what will happen tomorrow.. or the day after.
All I know is today.
I wish I live my life at the fullest.
For today not for yesterday nor tomorrow.

Have u ever detached your dreams from your worries?
Your hopes from your fears?

Breath in breath out.
To feel the air surround me
The sounds, the movement the weather.
To embrace what I have today, this hour, this very second.

Should I be scared of what will happen tomorrow?
Will I open my eyes in the morning
Will I still breath
Will I still speak, walk, taste, see..?
Will I still have my love ones?
Will I be alive?

All I know now I am alive.

But still…I know that I haven’t live at the fullest.

Can you answer why God creates fears?
Why there is down before up?
Why there is uncertainty?
Why one has to ask why?

Why we don’t know what will be tomorrow?

Wishing Mr. Okada to get well soon. We need you here.