Semoga Tulus Tidak Pernah Mati

… ku lihat mu sang penari menghibur sepenuh hati, ingin aku tahu apakah yang engkau cari ?- Sang Penari, Anggun C Sasmi


Ilustrasi : Bukang Sang Penari Saman (Nottingham, 2013)

Wolak-walike jaman edan. Sing ora edan ora kedumen. Sing watu dipoles berlian diagung-agungkan. Sing berlian beneran, tersingkirkan. Serba kebalik di jaman yang sudah gila. Yang tidak gila, tidak kebagian. Yang batu dipoles berlian diagung-agungkan. Yang berlian sungguhan malah disingkirkan.

‘Tulus’. Rasanya kata ini semakin jarang terdengar di telinga kita. Di jaman yang hampir semuanya ada label harganya seperti sekarang, kata ‘berapa harganya sis’ lebih sering terdengar. ‘Free Ongkir’ menjadi kata sandi pembicaraan. Setiap tindakan tak pernih sepi dari pamrih, dan harap akan sanjung dan pujian. Seolah semua pola interaksi antara kita harus saling menguntungkan. Kapankah kita berinteraksi layaknya dua manusia biasa, tanpa ada label-label yang melekat pada kita, tanpa kepentingan-kepentingan yang mengikat kita.

Tapi disini aku masih sering bisa melihat tulus itu.

Pada uluran tangan yang menawarkan bantuan mengabadikan momen jalan-jalan kami dengan jepretan kamera tanpa diminta bantuan. Menjadi bagian tak terlihat dari setiap foto kenangan. Pada gadis remaja yang berlari mengejarku dari belakang, mengulurkan sarung tangan ku yang jatuh jauh di belakang. Pada perempuan tua yang memberikan ku senyum dan sapaan hangatnya disetiap pagi buta. Pada lelaki paruh baya yang membukakan pintu, tanpa ku ketuk saat aku menepi kedinginan. Pada seorang pemuda yang merelakan sebotol minuman dan sebungkus coklatnya, untuk ku yang terlihat kehausan. Pada seorang kawan, yang membuatkan ku secangkir kopi dan teh hangat  saat melihat ku terlihat tak bersemangat. Pada seorang sahabat yang menepuk bahu dan memeluk punggung ku, saat aku membutuhkan dukungan. Pada teman setia yang selalu meminjamkan telinganya saat aku ingin berkeluh kesah. Pada sang belahan jiwa yang selalu ada tanpa diminta.

Masih ada Tulus, pada semuanya itu.

Seperti gemulai gerak tubuh sang penari, yang tulus menghibur sepenuh hati. Semoga Tulus tidak pernah benar-benar mati.

Indonesian Festival 2013, Nottingham UK


Saturday (15/06/2013). For me, It was so special day. The day, in which I felt home. The day, in which I felt I was in tiny Indonesia in the UK. The day, I can hear clearly the sound of Gamelan and other traditional music instrument for the first time in the UK. Yeah, the day was 10th Indonesian Festival 2013 (Indofest 2013) in The University of Nottingham.  It was annual event organized by Indonesian Student Society in The University of Nottingham in collaboration with Indonesian embassy and Indonesian students association in the  UK aimed at introducing and promoting the richness of Indonesian culture, the “unity in diversity” of Indonesian people, and the wonderful of Indonesian nature, as well as the amazingly enchanting Indonesian foods and cuisine.  There were thousands of people across the UK flocked to the one of green fields in the University  of Nottingham, one of the greenest campus environment in the world. They were Indonesian, as well as local and other nationality people. Luckily, it was quite sunny day in the summer session, the thing that made everyone felt very happy.

To introduce the Indonesian culture, people, and nature The Indonesian festival held some events including cultural performance in what we called “Indonesia Got Talent” program, Folk Games, Food Stalls, Workshops, and Photo exhibition. Herewith, some pictures that I could take from the spot.

Cultural Performance

The event was opened with a dance performance by “Tari Pendet”, Pendet Dance, a very famous dance from Bali. I saw by myself, this dance successfully attracted attention of  eyes. It was very dazzling dance performance indeed.

Another dance was ” Tari Saman”, the Saman Dance. It was also very famous dances performed by a group of people showing succinctness of the performer gestures. It was very attractive dance, indeed. Actually, there were many other dance performances that I  had no chance to spot them. You know, I was one of the event organizing committee.

Other than dance performance, there was traditional fashion show performed by British and other International people in the UK. It felt very proud and happy to know that other people from different nationalities loved our national costumes.

They also looked very happy and proud with these traditional costumes.  Yeah, to know and to learn the other cultures is always fascinating.

Folks Games

In other hand, we also introduced the Indonesian folks games. As matter of fact, Indonesia has a bunch of traditional games scattered around the Archipelago. Unfortunately, the advance of electronic and digital technology made these cultural heritages vanished. It might be only played once a year during the celebration of our independent day. It was so regretful.

In the festival, some of the games were introduced. such as “Balap Karung”.

Interestingly, It was not only played by Indonesian children, but also International children. Children, no matter what their nationality and cultural background, they are the same. They are always sincerely cheerful. They honestly express what they feel. Dealing with children is always entertain me.

The other folks games played in Indofest 2013 were Bangkiak Race and Tarik Tambang. Have a look on the following pictures, that were  successfully captured from the spot. Bangkiak is modified slipper made from wood. It must be worn by three children who must race together on the track.

While Tarik Tambang is very simple games. Two groups of people in opposite sides are pulling the same rope against each other. The winner is the group who could pull the rope stronger than another group.

At the heart of both games Bangkiak race and Tarik Tambang is a message that people should work together very well in team, it is the way to teach the children the essence of team work in which every people in team plays an important role and no one could gain full success by his/her self without helping hands from the others.


It was the things that I had been waiting for a long time to come. Yeah, the very Indonesian foods. I do not know why, my tongue never compromises with European foods. And it was the time to grab the very Indonesian food in Nottingham. So yummy.

This food yellow rice is called Tumpeng. It was amazingly delicious. It is usually made in the day of celebration such as birth day celebration. So, it is just like Tart Cake in western culture. This food has deep philosophy but in the essence is the expression of gratitude devoted to Allah, one and the only one God,  for all His blessing to us.

There were approximately 40 Indonesian food stalls in this festival with a bunch of foods from Nasi Padang to Es Cendol. Indeed, it was a great pleasure.

Other than ready served foods, there were also Indonesian food groceries as well, where you can find Indonesian food ingredient there. It was like traditional market in Indonesia. Where every people that dominated by women could speak in Javanese Language to each other without any hesitation, even it was in the UK.

I was so lucky, I found Tempeh and Sambal Pecel in the food groceries stall. They were not available in Nottingham and here they came. Although it was quite expensive compare again the price in Indonesia.

For a bar of Tempe I must pay £2 (approximately Rp. 30.000, it was equal to price of a half kilogram chicken) and £1.25 (approximately Rp. 18.000) for Sambel Pecel. However, for the UK prices, it was quite affordable.

The Workshops

To introduce the Indonesian cultures and local heritages, in the festival also be held some workshops. One of the workshop was Batik Workshop. It gave practical experience how to make Batik from scratch.

At the beginning, the visitor interested in Batik were given a chance to draw his/her own motif on white  fabric. Promptly, afterward, they drew the motif using Canting and Malam. The special tool and ink for drawing the Batik.

I saw they looked very enthusiastic learning how to make it  gradually, scratch by scratch. The process really taught us that there is no instant way to achieve a great masterpiece. Each single great achievement needs long, tedious, even painful process. Only love make the process become a pleasure.

In addition, in the festival, the committee also held Bahasa Indonesia workshop. It gave at glance introduction on how to speak some common words in Bahasa Indonesia. It was to great pleasure, to see some foreigners learning Bahasa Indonesia happily.

In the festival also be  held Bhineka Sport Championship, and the adventure Games.

The Sponsors

This festival was sponsored by Indomie, a top instant noodle brand in Indonesia and Teh Botol Sosro, to brand ready served tea.

Thanks Goes to…

We should thanks to The Indonesian Festival 2013 President and Vice President, the Indonesian Ambassador for UK and Ireland, T.M. Hamzah Thayeb. Great Job, Guys!

and for sure a bunch of thanks went to all organizing committee members, volunteers, and whoever had come to the festival. See you soon in Indonesian Festival 2014 next year !

Understanding the fact that we are different, then trying to know and learn each other is at the heart of harmony in Life. What a wonderful life, living in diversity. Not to compete against each other but to know and love each other.  Indeed,the diversity yield the unity for a better life in this one and only one beautiful world, where we live together as one.

*) Just a random note might be worth to remember in the future.

the day that might be worth to remember


It was Friday (14/06/2013). The beginning of the weekend. Nothing special for the day, it was just like the other days. I came to the lab and was working with my PhD stuff. I was finalizing my first year review report that the deadline was in 3 days. I added the  Gantt  chart of my research works in the future works section. Since, I got no technical feedback from my spv, at the rest of time I just read, read and read papers. Oh God, please bless me with very best luck and great success at the day of the Viva of my first year review. It will be the end of my PhD probation period, that determine whether I am qualified or not to be a PhD candidate.  Please, help me ya Allah.

In the afternoon, I hop to the University Park, for making  Jumah Prayer. As always, there were a bunch of Muslim brothers originating from differing countries came to the same place, the muslim prayer room in Portland Building, University Park, University of Nottingham. I always find genuine serenity and happiness in this place, a place where everyone shares his sincere smile, where everyone offers his warm brotherhood in the sake of God.

After making Jumah prayer and having small chats with some brothers, I had a meeting, the final meeting,  for Indonesian Festival 2013, that will be held on the next day. It was a thorough briefing about the program for all organizing committee members. It was quite surprising, the committee looked work very well and quite well-prepared even if the number of committee is quite few and they had very limited time for preparation due to the final examination. Two thumbs up, for the organizing committee. another note worthy achievement was that the committee successfully rose thousands pound sterling money from some sponsors such as Indomie and Teh Botol Sosro.

The meeting ended at around 03.30 pm. I came along with Mas Udin, Mas Walid, and Arif to George Green Library. We had further works on finishing our Bahasa Indonesia workshop media and toolkit. We were preparing a booklet depicting the Indonesian people, culture and people at glance. We also prepared a Bahasa Puzzle, a puzzle of matching words in Bahasa Indonesia versus English. We were very lucky, the library provided many excellent discussion rooms. To be honest, it was my first time to utilize the facility. The cozy sofa, wide-screen PC, and electronic color marker made the meeting so enjoyable.

The Ashar time prayer called us at 05.30 PM. We went back to the prayer room in Portland Building for Ashar prayer.  Afterwards, we worked back in Portland Building, there were some PCs connected to University network available to use by any students. We did not need to worry about saving files problem, because the university provided a free drive space accessible from any PC connected to the university networks. When we start working, we were starving badly. Thus, we ordered halal fried chicken advertised in brochures located in the prayer room. We ordered 14 pieces chicken wings, 4 boiled rice, and 4 cans of coke for only £14. It was very modest order isn’t it. But, because we were starving and ate together, the food taste extremely good. Even, we ate each single grain of the rice.

We finished up when the Maghrib prayer was calling. After the maghrib prayer, Arif and mas Udin went home while Mas Walid and me went to the lab at Jubilee Campus to print out our work. I was very lucky, the Lab provided free high quality color printer, photocopy machine, as well as binding machine for free. We finished up at 01.30 am, in the morning. We walked through the river nearby Queen Medical Center from Jubilee Campus to Dunkirk. Arriving at home, I did not go to sleep promptly. The Subuh time was at 02.30 PM, so I thought it was more sensible to sleep after the Subuh Prayer.

Thanks God for the day. It should be worth to remember one day later in the future times.

Saturday: another social life day

It was Saturday (8/06/13). It was quite sunny day in the summer, but not too sunny. In the morning, after having my breakfast with Nasi Goreng, fried rice that I cooked by my self, I went to George Green Library, in University Park Campus,  at around 09 am. It was not usual for me. The thing was I forgot to copy my working file from the university drive to my portable disk. The library was very quite and I was the first visitor of the day. It was quite understandable, since the examination weeks had ended. I was working on revising my first year review report. I should redraw some figures taken from some literature to my own way figure.

At around 11 am, I left  the library. I had an appointment with Arif, my close mate to go to Beeston, a city just nearby the University main campus,  for some missions.  I met him at South Entrance bus stop, and walked along with him to the city. Along the pedestrian on the way to Beeston, we took some pictures. It was summer, we found green trees and colorful flowers. At University west entrance we met Pak Sukirno. Finally, we did our missions together.


The first mission is finding a ” To Let” house. One of my friend of  friend would come to Nottingham on July and She needed my favor to find a rented room in shared house. Luckily, a day before, after jumah prayer I found an Ads. It was a serendipity, indeed. The house was available for Muslim Sisters Only and there were two available rooms on July and four available rooms on September. I had phone the landlord to make sure that the rooms were still available and today I had an appointment with the landlord to see the house in person. The house was at  Albert Road very close to University Park and at the way to Beeston. I thought, it was very perfect place.

We arrived at the house at around 11.45 am. I met the landlord, and he let me in the house. The landlord was a Muslim brother from Pakistan. At my first glance, he was very nice and he looked quite different with the typical Pakistan brothers that to be honest I had negative impression to them. But, the brother was different, I had very positive impression. He showed me all the rooms, the living room, and the kitchen. There were four rooms with private bath room inside. The room was quite neat and cozy and it was fully furnished. Each room had beautiful outside view as well. It was quite affordable as well, just for £280 per month including bill. After taking the picture of the house, i left the house and would notify the landlord as soon as possible.


The second mission was Casual Gathering at Mbak Mar house. It was very frequent for us to visit this house. We felt at home at this house. We met mas Walid and came along to mbak Mar house. As usual, we had very warm long chat there. There were Mbak Mar, Mas Hasto, and their three boy childreen; Mas Wisnu, Bu Arif and their the only boy child,  Mas Alaudin, and Mas Ihsan. Other than the warm chats, the thing that make we felt very happy here was that we got free very Indonesian food. In this time, we got Gado-Gado. It was very Indonesian taste, and it was extremely good. I felt like at my home country. Thanks a bunch mbak mar and family for these very-very delicious food. We had Pisang Goreng, the fried banana,  and Indonesian tea before the main menu. The chat continued until the Ashar prayer time was calling. Anyway, in the meantime, we heard bad news from Indonesia that Taufik Kiemas, the husband of former Indonesian President, Megawati Sukarno Putri, passed way In National Hospital, Singapore. Rest In Peace Pak TK!


After the Ashar prayer, we did the third mission. It was the main mission actually, it was preparing for Indonesian Festival on 15 June 2013. Since, we published a paper about Indonesian culture, we (Arif, Mas Walid, Mas Udin, and Me) were appointed to held Bahasa Indonesia Workshop on the day of  Indonesian festival. We were preparing for the workshop kits. We managed to prepared a leaflet about Indonesian fact at glance, and introducing Bahasa Indonesia. We also prepared a booklet for introducing the richness and the beauaty of Indonesia in nature, culture, and people.


Finally, we finished up our work at around o8.30 PM. We left mbak Mar house for the third mission. The third mission was shopping our weekly food stuffs in Tesco. It was Saturday night, so the supermarket will open until middle night. We took a trolley and shopped together wandering around the supermarket.  I bought vegetable oil, eggs, rice, snacks, and some condiments, as well as vegetables and fruits. We paid our stuffs in automated cashier machine with our Debet card. It was very easy to shop in the UK, it was very simple and easy.

After finishing the shopping we went home on foot again via Beeston and the pedestrian by the University Lake while having never ending chat among us. I arrived at home at around 09.45 pm. After making Maghrib prayer I went to the bed soon.


*) the picture taken from