Sunday, 1 May 2016
Saturday, 23 April 2016
Friday, 22 April 2016
Lucky perhaps is the right term to describe the people whose childhood surrounded by books. I was not raised in an academically oriented family, at least not until my parents see how passionate I am about my education. By that I don't mean to say that my parents were not putting any effort to educate me academically. In fact so far they are very supportive when it comes to my education. What they seem to have a little trouble is in creating an academic-orianted environment in the house for me, particularly at the age where stuffing knowledge to a child's mind is very considered crucial such as at the age of 0 to 14/15 years old. That age is known for a time where children acquire their knowledge from internal surrounding, family.
However I don't entirely put the blame on them. They were just doing their turn. That was how they were raised, and in turn that is how they raise their children. As a kid, I don't remember my parents asking me to sit and read books. Neither had I any recollection of them reading a story while putting me to bed.
But I do remember that I had a grandma who was also just as desperate as I was to have a conversation. Sometime elderly are not included in the conversation because it takes hours upon hours to make them understand the topics. Just like a child.
So there I was becoming a little kid who is very curious about world, and so did my grandmother who wants to tell everything she knew about world. With that, she was the person who told me stories before bedtime. She would tell me a story about a village girl who turns into a marmaid to avoid marrying his own brother. It's called Puteri Ijo (the green princess). Some people believe that the princess is still exist today and she often disguises herself as green soap and any other green objects. Others admit that he or she had an encounter with her, especially those who survived from drowning the lake.
Other time she would tell me a story about a princess who turned into a stone because she did not follow what her mother had told her "do not gaze at the back." Today I could analyze this phrase through multiple lens, but at the time the moral of the story is probably about listening to what your mother has to say.
Some other time I would be told a story of her own life during the Japanese occupation. She happened to live at the time when Indonesia was still under Japanese colonization. And she would describe eagerly how she was making friends with the Japanese children in the School of the People (Sekolah Rakyat.) And how admiring the Japanese souldier was, because they were very discipline. My grandmother still remembered the song they sang while marching the town.
I am so happy to have a grandma who was very knowledgeable about world, in her own way. She was such a story teller. When I was a kid, I keenly remember how I would believe everything she said. And I will keep believing her story if she could tell me one right now. But then school happens. Starting from middle school I see her lesser and lesser, until I heard a news about the day when she was finally not able to tell her story. I wish I had recorded all ther stories she told me in any form possible and immortalize them into anything visible. She is one of my true heroes. She is a hero without being labeled as one. She had experienced so many wars: the Japanese occupation, Sarikat Islam Indonesia, and the last once was the Civil war between Aceh and Indonesia. If one day I could write a book, it will be on her honor.
Coming back to my childhood...
I grew up in a small town where people know each other. It seems that the townspeople had an unwritten agreement in raising the towns-children. So instead of raising their children individually, they would send their children to the afternood school where the children were taught to read Kuran and learn how to make ablution, and conducting the prayer. By the time I was 10 years old I was more than able to read Kuranic verses and other Islamic texts written in Arabic alphabet which was actually Malay language. We call that the Jawi scripture.
And that was how my primary school schedule constructed, in the morning from 8 am to 1 pm I had to go to school (formal school) and from 4pm to 5pm I went to the afternood school. That was how I acquired my first step sort of knowledge.
I still regret the fact that my parents did not provide me access to popular children books. Again, without them making excusses, I would really understand what affect their chioises in raising me at the time. First, when I was a kid, between 1994 to 2014, the civil war was still going on. It is still clear in my memory of what was happening at the time. All valuable things such as clothes and kitchen stuff were hidden outsite the house, sometime burried undeground. The logic that they were trying to fulfil is if the house was burned at least we could still live outside with all these things: blanket and kitchen equiptments.
I still remember how everything was reversed. Women were made to go to the farm, while husbands stayed at home to prevent the unwanted. For a man to go to the farm could be accussed for doing hidden meeting with the rebel. Or even being kidnapped by the rebel and forced to fight with them against 'the country.'
I am aware that regret won't change anything. Therefore, I prefer to make my childhood experience a learning for myself so that I can be a better human being in my own version. Also if one day I get my turn to be parent I would do my best to educate my chidren from early age. I can foresee myself being a strict father who would ask his children to read books as much as possible and to keep a journal. I will make sure that if I fail to become a writer, my children should become one!
*What is happening? I was gonna write about Peter Pan that happens to be one of the assignments for Science Fiction and Fantasy Class. How could I end up here? God knows :)