I was so happy when I got those two news. Back thenI was trying to finish my thesis. It really encouraged me to finish it as soon as possible. Even though I was so excited , I was kinda afraid to move to Jakarta. I heard that there are many ‘bad people’ in Jakarta but I did not know how bad . I heard people would just do everything to get whatever they wanted. So I called my best friend to ask about it. He confirmed that there were many bad people in this town and all I need is to be careful.
So here I am…. it has been three years since I left Yogyakarta to start a new life in the big durian. I would say that it has not been easy but I could tell you that it has been super fun. I guess it is because my job has been enable me to meet many different type of people from the criminals, religious leaders, government officials, ambassadors, businessman and also tycoons. There were just so many things that I learnt and I loved it.
To be honest as a small town girl, I was experiencing a culture shocked. I just did not know how to adapt with it. Somehow I was feeling lost, people just really ‘care’ about what other people wearing, people just really ‘care’ about where you live, people just really ‘care’ about what you eat, this and that. It really made me sick and tired. So I asked myself ‘Why don’t they just accept other people just the way they are?’
It seems that the games doesn’t go that way. It’s a metropolitan life competition where people feel that they must be able to maintain their social status by wearing a good outfit, eating in a good restaurant or living in a prestigious area.
I vividly remembered when one of my friend invited me to go out for dinner, on that day she complimented me about my 60 USD of Zara shoes and she asked me to go out with her. Or when one of my friend told me that he would not go out with me if I have nothing. Really?! I somehow couldn’t believe what I am dealing with. Are they real friend? Or is it possible to make a genuine friend in this city? I don’t know
But It drove me crazy to not having friends around me so here I was …. starting to follow the games. I start going to fancy restaurant, purchasing expensive outfit and shoes, this and that, and this and that. I start to make myself familiar with hi-end lifestyle (which I have never thought of). Now when I start to wear 700 USD of pair of shoes, 1,000 USD of dress or carry 2,000 USD of handbag, I become intimidating for others. So what do they want?Despite the fact I enjoyed the whole things but I just feel that I was not myself, it’s not real. We must pay for everything. If you want to get a friendly greeting from shop attendant, you wear something nice and fancy; if you want to get a warm greeting from shop attendant, you must purchase their product; if you want to get a friendly greeting from waitress, you give them big tips. Everything is about money. People are willing to do everything to get whatever they want. I don’t know if it was just me feeling that way or this is the rule of the games that we play?
I miss the sincere life, which I can get in Yogyakarta. People will not care about what you wear, what you eat, where you hang out to, etc. I can just be me and I miss that. I remember the warmness of the old lady selling vegetable in traditional market or the friendly greeting of the jamu seller. Somehow it just gives me a peace of mind.
I know I wouldn’t be the same person anymore. I wouldn’t be the same Fani, who moved to Jakarta three years ago. But I know that I want a peaceful simple life where traditional and modern life are met. I miss to be a real person and hang out with a real people who wouldn’t care about my social status. And all I know I can find that peacefulness in my hometown, Yogyakarta. In the end of the day, just like what they say …. you can take the girl out of the village but you cannot take the village out of the girl. Right?
Few weeks ago, I was terrorized by the girl friend of my friend. She called me villager. I laughed. What is wrong with a villager? What is the definition of villager? Is there anything bad about being a villager? Most of former Indonesian presidents were coming from village, yet they still could run the country. Many of successful Indonesian people are coming from villages, yet they still can achieve their goal and become successful people. So what is wrong from being a villager? I don’t get it. It is funny to me.
And I am not ashamed being villager. I was born as a villager and raised a villager. My grandmother always said to me “No matter how far you go, no matter how educated you are, no matter how rich you are… you are still Javanese. You need to keep the tradition alive.” And I think my grandmother was right, tradition makes me more human than a modern life which tend to make human as a robot with no value. It is tiring, irritating and frustrating.
I don’t know whatelse I should say here but God…. I really want to leave this J town…. Even though I love what I am doing here, I am sick and tired of living this town. I really want to leave…..