About Things

About The Last Days

In the last days at school, it was not that easy. I was heart broken, I was ill, and the fear of leaving my ‘home’ kept haunting me all the time.

I warned myself. But maybe it’s sort of these “be careful of what you say because it may come true”. And it did come true. Many of my friends and I were expecting that finishing IB exams means a total happiness, that the remaining days at school would all be glittered by happiness. People talked about ‘things to do’ for the last days and …. never mind. It didn’t happen. Not to scare the future second years, but in the last days, people were tired. We just procrastinated. And we also needed to pack up and clean our room. Some people managed to cross some of their ‘to-do-list’, but it was overwhelming. At least for me.

I started crying since the Thursday of that week. Every bit of memory that was added to the experience made me cry. The last cultural cafe, the second year show, and the big prank my friends made for me. The closing ceremony, the teacher show, and the last night All of these made me cry. And I cried like never before.

I still have a clear image of the day we were leaving. 22nd of May. It was a different one to the last year’s second year leaving where it was all bleak and raining a bit which amplified the sadness. This one was sunny. Like a day in the weekend where you would just chill out outside and play volleyball or something. And there were us wiping our tears, as one by one of the second years were taking their last steps at the college. No managed to say goodbye to everyone, I think, but I didn’t manage to say goodbye to some of my friends. I deliberately stayed longer to say more goodbye as I would still be in Freiburg anyway.

But eventually, I left too. One of the last ones. I think it was already half past noon. As I were sitting in the car observing my surrounding, the image of my first arrival there was projected clearly in my mind. It was with the school van, with Michael and Luigi and that was sunny as hell like the day I am leaving. As that comes to mind, the realization that the experience was over finally arrives. Instead of making me cry again, that thought actually let me sigh my first relief and say: it’s over.


About Staying Longer

It’s been a bit more than three weeks since then. I am still in Freiburg, if you don’t know.

And I even already came back to the college for four times. It’s always weird. Of course it always recalled some memory, but nothing really made me sad. It always gave me smiles instead. I was sitting casually at the mensa again, I talked to the first years, the staff, and it always came with happiness. And it was really weird! I saw how my roommate Alex changed ‘our room’ into a hotel-like room. And I was greeting the first years casually as I passed by with my bike in the city.

With all of these in mind, the fact that I am staying in Freiburg for longer time really changed the situation. I am gradually detaching myself from UWC. It’s like me suggesting myself that I can still be there again and it wasn’t real. I am deluding myself.

And now, I am faced with the fact that I will be really leaving. I am facing the reality. In less than two weeks. It struck me really. I am not ready to say goodbye. But I am familiar with this. Recently. And for now, I will just keep in mind my first year’s (Farid) words that he eloquently wrote on his blog: you’re luck if it stings.

On the 26th of June, I will be leaving to Indonesia. That day, this blog will officially be invalid anymore. Not that I am deleting it, but it’s no more Indonesian in Freiburg.


About Going Home

I will be settling back in my original home with such climate I am not used to anymore and the culture that I haven’t been exposed for a year. It will take a while to feel home again and may not be completely

But surely it will be fine and wonderful. There are certainly a lot of things to get excited about.

Although, I’m not really going back for good. I will be there only for two months and after that, this Indonesian in Freiburg will become Indonesian in Middlebury*. This just means, I eventually have to encounter a parting like this again. It really feels like a cycle. And it’s tiring. And what I can do is only to remember, again, what Farid says about “You’re lucky if it stings” and this quote:

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An important note I want to say is, I am going back home not only for the sake of going back home. I am still aware of the environmental impact I will make by taking a flight. My original plan was to stay so that I would take one less flight. I also want to explore Europe even more. There is just a lot of memory here that I am still not willing to say goodbye yet.

But, I remember my ultimate goal is to go back and give my best to change this country to be a better place. To constantly contribute brick by brick that let this country’s foundation become greater and greater. And this time, I am coming with one brick. It might be nothing for the nation, but a huge one for me. And I’m really looking forward to sharing the news once it’s done.

Have a nice day,
Bayu

* No promise that this blog will turn into Indonesian in Middlebury. Let’s see!

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Entering May

Hi there,

It’s 11:22 PM when I begin to write this. I just finished reviewing Biology, worked out in the gym, and read some news.  Tomorrow I will have my first final exam – and yes it’s Biology – so I probably should go to sleep early. Even my biology teacher, Kris, told us that if there should ONLY be two things we learn from his classes, it’s having enough sleep and not smoking.

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Project Week 4 – The Laramie Project

Let’s count. One, two, three. Let’s think about PWs I’ve done: First, food Bank; Second, working in a farm; and third, establishing a startup(-ish).

If I think about it, those project weeks are in the areas that I knew I was passionate about. That means, these project weeks didn’t challenge me to my maximum. I knew I loved doing those things. And this term, the scenario is different.

Most of the project weeks being proposed were either skiing or something related with big cities. I have fear of height, so I don’t want to put myself on a situation where I feel uncomfortable for the whole week. Skiing? Crossed. Then, I also believe that you often get distracted in the big cities, so you can’t do your best there. Another one crossed.

Then, it left me with two options: La Machina Fissa and The Laramie Project. La Machina Fissa is basically a project somewhere in France where the students help in the garden of an old reading retreat. I love to do so, but then, I’ve done about similar thing before. And the other option somehow intrigues me a lot, so I decided to cross La Machina Fissa as well.

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The members

And here we go: The Laramie Project. So, what is it? It is a theater play. Yes, for those who know me, I chose a theater project and I already performed it. The Laramie Project is a play by Moisés Kaufman that is based on interviews and journal entries that were conducted after a gay student was murdered in Laramie, Wyoming, USA. And since it is based on real-life situation, there are over 50 characters in this piece played by ONLY 8 of us. Everyone plays a lot of characters basically, although some only have few lines. And for me, my main character was Jedadiah Schultz – a university student who whose changes are depicted in this play. I also played as a judge, a DJ, a Mormon leader, a priest, etc.

This play is not enjoyable, to be honest. Don’t get me wrong, what I mean is that it is a long emotional play (2 hours 15 minutes). But it is certainly beautiful. It does not force you to adopt a perspective (e.g. pro-LGBT), but rather it unwraps multiple perspectives from different sides: religious people to atheists, old to young, gay to straight – everything. And after playing this theater piece, what I think most of the people in Laramie had learned through this case is, at least, that “in the end of the day, we are all human”.

The preparation for this play was relatively short. All the processes happened only within two weeks, from first reading the script, memorizing the lines, to remembering well where a chair should in a certain moment (they call it “moment” in this play, not scene). Since we didn’t want to get stuck in Freiburg, we went to Pallegney, France (it’s in the middle of nowhere, tbh) to relax and practice in a new atmosphere.

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Rehearsal in Pallegney, France

We didn’t only achieve the goals for the performance, but we also had the whole week well-spent. We watched the whole Angels in America, cooked dinners, played games, walked around – it was nice. Another unique thing about this group is that we have two staff members in our group: Emmett and Julia. Emmett was both the proposer of this project week and the director of the play (applause for his success!) while Julia was also performing with us. Somehow, there was this dogma that there will be such awkwardness to spend a long time with staff members, but that’s not true! “In the end of the day, we are all human” – it was very chill!

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I made this poster actually, what do you think?

And lastly, the performances. We performed it twice as shown in the poster above, just a week after the project week. I personally performed best in the first one as I didn’t make any mistakes other than the minor ones, but as a group, our best performance was on the second one. We expected to have more audience as we invite people from the city too, but there were still more than 200+ people in both plays which is still great. Many people commented that it was such impressive, moving play, which made us feel rewarded. Some cried, some continued the discussion further.

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Before the second play began

Our project week ended the last. We spent the most time compared to the others. Arguably, it was the best project week here and definitely my best one. Not that my other project weeks weren’t good, but because this one challenged me much further and there is a strong sense of tangibility. It was difficult to detach ourselves from the whole thing, but we ended up nicely with ordering pizza and sharing our last thoughts.

Thanks for reading,
Bayu

Project Week 3 – Do Good! Shop & Help

You may be confused with the name, but it’s a good summary of our goal and I’m going to explain it now.

In this project week, we were aiming to collaborate with a non-profit organization called AKGG to establish a unique platform for refugees and non-profit individuals to sell their creation for further goods. In other words, we are making This was not a student proposal, but a staff proposal from Katarina – an English and Theater teacher – who has a network in that local organization in Kassel, Germany.

As a group, we divide ourselves to five different groups, which are: IT, Design, Concept, Content, and Marketing. As my interest in developing a website was on its peak, I decided to be a part of the IT division. The areas we were working on are: hosting system, payment system, and web database.

Not only working on the digital part, but we also jumped into the real stuff, which was getting involved with the refugees in the making of their products, which were jewelries from silverwares.

After all the processes, we gave a final presentation for possible sponsors, in which we managed to successfully fundraise at least 5000 Euro (five thousand!) from the local government and a private company. And actually, this project also became a project week again this term and they managed to publish the website and win an award that gives them $4000! This is so cool because the project has been successfully seeded even before the website runs properly. If you are interested in this, you can have a look at our Facebook page here: Do Good Shop.

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Overall, it was such a nice experience because everything ran smoothly. In addition to my own work, I am also satisfied with myself because I managed to take care of our money and schedule quite well. Kassel is also a nice city!

Cheers,

Bayu

Tick, tock

Let’s face the fact. It is just ten weeks left before it ends. The school year, my study at UWC Robert Bosch. Ten weeks minus one day before closing ceremony. The book is coming to an end, the exams are approaching and our hearts need to gradually get detached from this place. As I often say in my posts, time flies. So fast.

And similar with other books, I want this book to have a nice ending. I want to leave this experience bittersweet, without regrets. As you may notice, this book wasn’t on a nice track. Or, at least, the documentation of it. The narrator had been so busy that he couldn’t update his blog much. Now, the narrator wants to be honest. In addition to a pile of assignment to do that took most of my time, I have been contemplating about what to share on my blog and what I should keep privately, which leads me to not posting anything at all.

Indeed, it was a mistake because there are many interesting things to share as well without having me and my things discussed in it. But, since the time is going to be over, again, I want to end this book well. Therefore, I am going to commit myself to share my last days experience in UWC and what I gained in this experience in general in the next weeks.

And in the next post, I am gonna start with …. Project Weeks!

Beautiful things (Photos)

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Winter time.

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Snow. Cold. White.

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Beautiful.

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Welcome a new member of our community (who survives for… less than a day)

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Wait. Is this spring already?

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It is just last week.

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Ironically, it was the day “Snow Day” happened

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(House for two years <3)

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Greetings,
Bayu

 

Let there be IB

Who knows from the beginning that IB (or International Baccalaureate) can take your life so much? Perhaps, my first-year observation was too narrow. Or perhaps, being indifferent is just my thing. But it is overwhelming to see the life of second years through the eyes of a second year. University application, standardized test, Internal Assessment, Extended Essay, FOA, WT, you name it, and most of them are stuff from the IB.

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Coming back

Tick-tock. Time flies. My fingers have been numb for a long time. They usually dance on white alphabets of a Lenovo laptop every week or every other week, but for about four months they have been locked from playing with words. Not completely, they are still playing for reporting Urban Nomadizing or doing the “acronyms” – EE, IA, WA, etc. The victims are not only my fingers, but also my brain. My brain has been lost, missing the way to express itself. My brain wants to release the emotions. Letting the ideas fly roaming the air. And now, is the time for coming back.


It has been roughly 2 months since the school began. Even today is already the first host family weekend and Fall Break is coming in a week. But let’s take a step back before the school began because many things were happening, including Urban Nomadizing. For those of you who don’t know what it is, Urban Nomadizing is the name of a project of me going back from Indonesia to Germany without using airplanes. The whole thing can be found later in the blog once I update it (some parts are already there, including pictures).

But for now, let me just focus on one thing, something happening before all of the above: my stay in Indonesia. Perhaps, from the previous post, you can get a sense how it was: hot, humid, friendly, short, yet intense. My summer break was actually from May 28th to August 20th, but since it also consists of my journey and attending a summer university, I only had almost 6 weeks in Indonesia.

In the first week, what I basically do was just balancing between meeting my old friends and organizing the mangrove tree planting project. Before going back to Indonesia, I ran a small donation in UWC RBC for a mangrove tree planting in Indonesia. Muara Gembong, a coastal area just three hours away from my city, is hardly damaged by erosion due to a positive feedback of mangrove deforestation. This also causes many houses to be flooded all year round and even more, a habitat loss for Javanese langur. One possibility to help is simply by planting more mangroves there to give more protection and that’s why I was doing it.

 

After the first week, it was already Ramadhan – a month in Islamic lunar year where Muslims are fasting every day from sunrise to sunset.  One of the nice things in Ramadhan is that people often gather together in the evening to break their fasting together, from families, organizations, to school reunions. This means, we have it all the time. I consider this as an easy opportunity to catch up with old friends in Indonesia rather than meeting one-by-one. It is always fascinating to see how people change when they are growing up.

In between, most of the work I did was a balance of my Extended Essay and the preparation for Urban Nomadizing (tickets & visa). This part of summer break might seem boring, but my stay was actually powerful. I have been constructing my perspective towards things in a rather liberal environment in UWC, without actually encountering the real-life situation in the society, especially the society of my origin. Let’s take my stance towards environmental issues as an example.

Being sustainable in UWC bubble is easy. We don’t need to worry about the meal option and transportation at all, as the environmental-friendly options are available. But the attempt back home is a different story.  In term of food, literally no one in my surrounding is vegetarian and as in other cultures, there is barely vegetarian option available in the market. Luckily, my mom is very supportive towards this, so there is always vegetarian option on our table. The same was with transportation. Sadly, public transportation seemed to be an option only for economically poor people while using motor bike is so much more time and energy efficient, and even can be cheaper than public transportation, due to uncontrolled usage of personal vehicles.

After all, everything comes to an end, including my summer break in Indonesia. I had to take myself back from being comfortable at home and get ready for another home. I wasn’t going right away to anywhere though, but Urban Nomadizing. However, if I think about it, Urban Nomadizing makes road my home as well, so where is my home?

Bayu