Monday, March 30, 2009

Starburst in Insomniac Night

Since late 2005, I’ve had the great pleasure of knowing what the best in life can offer. It started back when I moved my ass to Sumatra. It was a confusing feeling at the first time, because it wasn’t what I had been dreaming for. I though I would have great life in Jakarta, see modernity of civilization and taste a colorful life here. If it’s not too late to acknowledge that life in Sumatra is one of the best times in my life, I would love to confess it. I won’t blame the childish thought that I had back 3 years ago, it was just a thought I did know why, I love that I finally realize I was wrong.

The universe seemed to work showing me that life is rich, wherever we live and whatever condition that we have. It showed me how beautiful a smile of local people could be, how genuine people’s heart in my organization and how easy life in sub-urban was. I miss it. And the universe succeeded to move me. Ever since, I spent much time admiring my life in Sumatra. And many times I did meditative time in a quiet place, just like I’m doing tonight.

It’s another Sunday night of insomnia striking. I’ve been feeling it lately. I do some googling and Mr. Google told me it occurs when there is disorder in the brain and heart and overactive mind. And there are some treatments for insomnia actually, most of them are in biological words I don’t understand and at the end of it, Mr. Google said that, “…In several cases, sexual intercourse has been found to heavily reduce insomnia.” Thanks for that mister. What I have now is only my laptop and an empty can of Pringles.

I’ve been admiring the universe lately. I felt happiness, completely happy when reading anything related to universe. It is just something much bigger than us, even our earth and we don’t really know how life out of there. When insomnia striking, I usually do some meditative method, looking at the sky for a while, feel the peacefulness and let the imagination flies as far as my eyes can take me. I look up at the sky and it is quite clear after a heavy rain this afternoon. I stand on the floor outside my house. Reno and Keita are standing there too; maybe they feel the same way. Starts are shining to show that they really exist.

Do you get the explanation from teacher about how our universe looks like and how big it is? Well, I’ve been spending some time to learn about Astronomy lately and have been admiring God creation.

Our mother earth is located at somewhere in Milky Way galaxy. Milky Way galaxy itself is the galaxy in which our solar system is located. It is a spiral galaxy which is part of local group of galaxies, together with Andromeda galaxy, and that local group is one of the billions galaxies in the observable universe. Oh yes, I don’t do typo, it is BILLIONS and OBERSERVABLE. So what are the objects beyond the observable galaxy, no one knows actually. The universe is limitless.

Calculating how big our observable universe isn’t that easy, but quite simple roughly. Let’s start with Milky Way. It has diameter of 100,000 light years (ly) and thickness of 1,000 ly. Recall that 1 ly is the distance reached by light for a year (light speed is approximately 1 billion km/h, it’s like driving from Jakarta-Bandung with speed 120 km/h but light doing it 9 millions time faster than your car). Milky Way itself has 200 to 400 billions of stars with Milky Way as one of the biggest and the brightest one.

Milky Way is just one of the billions of galaxies in the universe. So what’s the biggest galaxy in the observable universe? The largest galaxy is IC 1101, the monstrous giant elliptical galaxy measures a whopping 6,000,000 light years (as compared to the 100,000 ly of the Milky Way) in diameter and is said to be at least 60 times as large as the Milky Way. It also contains about 100 trillion stars (200-400 billion for the Milky Way).

So, Milky Way is one of the billions of galaxy with diameter size of 100,000 ly and the biggest one’s diameter is 6,000,000 ly, and there are billions of galaxies out of there with size in between. I really can’t imagine how big the universe is. And I having said that it is monstrous giant, we then have to be overwhelmed by the fact that all those galaxies are just in the observable universe.

Okay, if the conclusion of this note is that I’m nerd with all those numbers and facts, what the heck. I just love the beauty in putting all numbers and facts into something overwhelmingly beautiful and undeniably romantic. Life is beautiful in a way that it gives unique meaning for everybody. Universe is full of things to see.

Imagining sitting on M82 galaxy.

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Friday, March 20, 2009

Lesson from Reno

That weak body lay down on the red-squared floor. So exhausted, I guess. He tried so hard to open up his eyes, but his energy was just dormant inside a broken heart. He was forgotten. From 8 to 8 he struggled, hoping to breathe love that he should have as a baby. That cute face I saw at the first time I fell in love with him changed into a helpless face. He was about to die.

That morning I woke up consciously. I heard loud voice outside of my room. It's my mother's voice, saying that my Bebi was dead. I did hope I was dreaming, but I started the day finding my dog has died. It was one day in Bandung, on the way back to Jakarta, I stopped at one interesting spot where people sold dogs. Amongst all, I fell in love with special one: a mixed of black and white cute dog. He starred at me and moved his tail fast. He winked at me and the connection turned into love at the first sight. I moved my hands to reach him and take him out of his kennel. Had his feet on the ground, he moved passionately, here and there, everywhere, and that was love.

Bebi was dead that morning.

It wasn't the first time. Since 15 years back, at least 5 dogs has died in my house. I outlived them all. Before Bebi was died, I had Goofy, a male small dog who's very energetic. He moved everywhere and bit anything alive in the house: mouse, cockroach, lizard, and... me. Thanks for that...! He was died when he ate chicken bone, something at the beginning I didn't know it was the cause of his death, in a lazy Saturday morning. I woke up in the morning after hearing my mother screaming, saying that Goofy couldn't breathe. When I saw him, he sat on the floor, hardly breathe and I really had no idea what happened to him. Somebody had poisoned him, I guess - exactly what happened to some previous dogs. At the first minutes I just tried to sit next to him and looked at his eyes. He starred back at me. Helpless eyes. If he could speak, he must be saying that he felt a pain inside his body. It was silent, what I could hear was only his fast breathe, tried getting oxygen as much as he could. Shortly I knew that he didn't get poisoned but got choked. He couldn't breathe and I could see his skin started changing its color into dark-blue, a sign of no oxygen in his blood. It must be so painful in his throat. He then lay down weakly on the floor. He couldn't still breathe. I felt like part of my body was cut by a knife and it was painful. Hoping that he would live longer, even just for a day, I put some water into his mouth and he started to breathe again. The bone was released. I thought I saved his life. But it was too late. I could still feel the warmth of his body when he was dead.

People come and go in life, just like train has to depart from station to another. Airplane always has schedule to take off. Boyfriend or girlfriend has to leave, many times, just for us to understand what love is, what real love is. Some still can feel how good parents' love but many felt it like an alien. Sun has to leave so people can feel how good a sleep under a moon is. It's destiny. People died and left beloved one. It is how the universe works. By this, we learn each day what the love is. We realize that someone has left us. Imagine how Benjamin Button felt when his friends had to go to heaven, one by one, while he was getting younger. It is mystery. It is destiny, and destiny has its own way to teach us.

Talking about dog, now I have new dogs, Reno -who I bought by myself and Keta -who just fell from heaven to my house with his hot sexy babe - but it turn out that his super girl had to leave because my mom didn't want to see any other hot woman in the house. Both of them are male; they play everyday, chew anything they see and they sleep together. Now you imagine how homosexual they are.

When I bought Reno, he was so attractive with all those fat he had! He was super active that he followed me anywhere I moved to. When I took him home, he was sick. And many times I had to bring him to the pet’s clinic. I thought he wasn't happy in the house, but I just didn't know why. If only he could say, "Fuck, I hate this crab food!", than that would be easier for me. And the worst was when one day in a morning, my Innova crushed him, press one of his feet with an Innova tire and it was the first time, after being sick many times, I thought he would die. He could hardly walk with that one foot. I knew how bad it felt: he was just 3 months old, still needed soft food, had been sick several times and got needle shot onto his body, and got crushed by 100-something-kgs-car. Once I ever decided to take his life away, couldn't imagine how painful it felt.

But he's still alive now. I'm lucky. He's lucky.

My Reno is big now. He's just like other normal dog; running here and there, chew anything when he's hungry, barking at people, and sleep. Today, when I was back from office, he jumped at me and felt so happy. How weak he was 6 months back, but how strong he is now. His passion to live has made him alive now. And there's something I can learn from him: if we want to stay alive, we just can. I believe it wasn't a coincidence that I met him: all God's creations are interdependent each other and there's one dot that our life is crossed: "Five people you meet in heaven" can describe what I mean.

I ended the night doing skipping and jogging with Reno and Keta, something I've been starting again since two weeks back. It's just good to play with them and doing sport at the same time. A lesson from a Reno: now you can imagine how humble I am, even a dog can really teach me how to live healthily.

Have a healthy life!

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Tuesday, March 17, 2009


"The pursuit of happiness is a most ridiculous phrase; if you pursue happiness you'll never find it." C. P. Snow, English novelist & scientist (1905 - 1980)

One day in this week, my feet took me to the nursery room, a quiet place at the corner of my office. Most of the time it's free, people just come into the room and use it. I prefer call it as room with freedom. People just come and go, rarely spend too long inside it. This room is a place of reflection. So special and personal.

The room has nice sofa inside. At the center of it, there's round table with some chairs. White board hanging on the wall. The glass windows are placed at the corner, two ways side that we have 180 degrees view of skyscrapers standing from Sudirman street. From this 15 floor, I could see people walking on pedestrian area in Mega Kuningan. I could only see the move of their mouth, felt like observing fish inside aquarium. Whilst stuck in quietness, I could hear the murmur of my heart and my life imagination came out vividly. I let my mind brought me to the sky, as far as my eyes can take me.

I felt peacefulness. I just started the week with passion to think positively and let love guide my life. A thought that when I say something bad to people, I'm actually torturing my self. A thought that we can share the love everyday, give it to sadness and turn it into joy; share what we have when people really need it. I felt positive and it created energy. It was happiness that I felt, and I was grateful for the feeling. I just want to be happy and I felt it in 30 minutes of peaceful moment in nursery room.

Next month while I'm in China, I will be turning into 27. I feel becoming an adult with all responsibility. I feel so lucky for the life I have in hand. I feel great. I feel blessed. For the family I love. For the girlfriend I have. For great friends I meet everyday. And for God has given me one more day to live. For one more breath to take, so that oxygen coming into my blood cells and burnt calorie into energy. I feel energy in my minds. I feel love lives in my life.

While I see my life is great so far, I see my journey still needs billions of miles of bumpy roads and frankly I'm excited to see how far the dream can take me, just as far as my eyes took me whilst standing awkwardly in nursery room. And yes, in 27 years if you have seen the world, in the future you can see the universe. At least that was what I learn from my mother's birthday celebration last Saturday.

My mom is turning into 50 last week. Two weeks before mom entered my room whilst I was in front of my notebook. She said she wanted a small birthday celebration with closest family and some friends. As son who wants to see her happy, I fully supported the idea. It's duty of a boy who once spent several years back far from home. I used to live in Bandung for 4 years and in Sumatra for 2 years and it was just simply great having life back in Jakarta. Mom always supported me in those 6 years, and I'm really grateful to have love like this. When I tried hard to get my degree for better life in the future, mom was the one who bought me shirts and anything needed as student, because she understood I could not afford to buy. Every month, mom used to visit Bandung to see me, long before Cipularang free-way existed. Mom once cried of feeling tortured by overwhelming tasks of a mother and a business woman; you will know what I mean if you were me, and you wake up in your lazy 4-am-morning to see her start working in the kitchen alone. How lonely she felt, I guess. Ever since, I felt the love of a mother always lays within her, and so do mothers in the world. Shortly, I felt great having a great mother, and a small 'yes' turns into a birthday celebration. Is she happy? I guess so. Surrounded by people, singing and dancing, she looked happy. Not only my mom, the guests felt that way too; including my grandma who was once diagnosed having diabetes, almost gave her life up and got one of her legs amputated, now happiness was injected into her heart. At least that was what I could see from his dance in the midst of normal people. I love you grandma.

After all, it's happiness that we need in life and it's just inside us. We sometimes just need conscious move to make it manifested in our life.

In the hug of happiness and I hope you get the bigger one, everyday.

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