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Another Trip to Success (Only in Indonesia)

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I went very early this morning. At 4.30 in the dawn I had woken up. The voices from out loud-speaker of the mosques made the silent morning in chaos. Those voices were hard to understand. One sang shalawat, other recited the Holy Qur’an, and another made unexplainable noise. I dreamt of having solemn and nice dawn. One mosque produces sound or any activity that they call ‘religious’ is okay. Just one at a time, not all at once, if so, I cannot hear anything unless yelling and emotional morning. I can never understand why the man inside the mosque is so that ambitious to share his voice. Is that a calling of religion? Or does it come from his personal ambition?

I tried to find a suitable outfit for the ‘Sidang’. Sidang needs a formal outfit such as suit or blazer. After seeing here and there, I found one that I thought suitable enough. Actually I felt very reluctant to go. My exhaust from my endless working from Thursday-Friday-revising chapter 1 to be shown Monday- is still clear. But, I must not listen to my weak part of my body; I must go whatever it takes. Then I had noodle for my breakfast. It’s been a week I lost my appetite. The Sidang kills my hunger for food. I know that noodle will not help much, yet, at least, there is some food inside my belly.

Wearing a formal outfit caused me to suit my self with the outfit. I was very serious, even maybe I forgot to smile. I went by bus and I got one at 5.45. The bus was a bit crowded. There was no seat left for me.  A man who stood near me said ‘that lady will get off in ‘chunil’ (a factory near ciranjang)’.  I nodded and a bit happy to imagine I stood not too long. Then a beautiful girl in pink got on, she stood in front of me. The driver said to the pink girl to inform that in chunil a lady would get off. I talked to myself, ‘one seat for two people, crazy offer’.  I talked to myself again ‘I have the right to get the seat than that beautiful girl as I get on earlier than her’. It was funny; my head was busy talking ‘the right’ of the seat. I believed that pink girl also thought the same thing. She would talk to herself,’ I would get a seat as soon as that chunil worker get off’.  Then, the lady got off. You know what happened? I got the seat as I stood just behind the seat of that chunil lady. I imagined how annoyed the pink girl to me. But I did not care and I did not want to care.

Not long after I got a seat. The conductor let a group of men to get on. There was no seat left, but the conductor continued adding the passengers. No room to stand. I could not sit well, I should lean my body. There were too many people and pushed me.  A heavy bag lay on my shoulder. The owner did not realize that he had burdened other with his bag. I tried to save my shoulder from it. But I couldn’t, it was too crowded.  Thank God, that man moved; I could feel that life was in my side. I did not know that a worse thing had waited for me.

Just a second after the bag-man leaved, a lady in white stood near me. From her appearance she is above forty, a civil servant. I did not take any notice to any actions she made.  But, I put all my attention to her when I felt my shoulder very hot.  I imagined that she brought a hot water in her bag, she did not know if the water would caused other in suffer from its heat. I could not save my shoulder. I had a short rest from heating when the driver hit the brake and caused all passengers to move forward. The bus run and stopped since the road was heavy with vehicles. Many times people yelled to comment motor-bikers who took over turn carelessly.

The hot-bag lady moved backward unintentionally as the brake hit in a sudden. Secretly, I thanked God that she moved backward, my shoulder rested from heating came from her bag. Suddenly from nowhere, a voice of man heard, ‘ma’am, your bag is leaking’. I bet she shocked to death. I turned my head to the source of voice. I saw the hot-bag lady taking a wallet from her bag. The water dropped from her wallet. She opened her wallet, and gosh…! Her expensive hand phone watered. It flashed its light, it hang. She was confused and screamed for help to turn off her phone’s flash. I did not try to be a heroine that time. I realize, I would not be able to turn it off. The phone is a kind of android, the kind that I am not familiar at all. The hot-bag lady blamed herself by saying ,’ I hold this phone, why I put it inside my bag, huh..the soup must leak’. Aha! I know now, why it was so hot, it was the curry. The hot-bag lady got mad to her self; she worried that her hand phone would not work anymore. I remembered once, my phone rinsed into water, it was unpacked and dried by hair-dry, it still worked. But her phone, I guess it wouldn’t work anymore. She put back the battery and completed it by grumbling. She complained that her money also wet. I did not know whether I felt pity on her or not, as another incident emerged. A thin girl almost fell because she felt dizzy as less fresh air available on the bus. She was asked to sit at the floor as no seat left. She sat amongst legs. I noticed that she was too thin; maybe she stopped eating to make her body thin. Or she was obsessed to be thin and her body cannot sustain her so she almost fell.

I tried to enjoy the trip but I couldn’t. I put my attention to the sit-girl. I was so surprised, she played and busy things with her hand phone. I wondered why she did that. Didn’t the phone cause her to feel dizzier? She sat on the bus floor amongst legs and texting (?). I couldn’t understand this world. Or, she was dizzy because she couldn’t do texting (??). O … please.

Luckily my turn to get off came. One thing I almost forget. I gave the conductor 50.000 rupiah. I used to pay 15.000 rupiah from Cianjur to Padalarang. But this time, he gave the change 45.000 rupiah. I paid 5.000 rupiah!! It was very cheap fare, but very expensive payment for my pain in my shoulder.


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