Mudik 2018

Mudik or Pulang Kampung, is an Indonesian term to explain a migrant workers (or like me, student) who live outside their original city/country and return back home during Raya celebration (Eid). This year, just like any other people, I return home – Jakarta – from Canberra. The reason I return home is not just because its Hari Raya, but mostly because my Dad is sick. It is quite shocking because finally it made me realise that my parents are going older each day. And I just want to spend time with them before everything is too late.

Jakarta will always be home for me. And glad I’m back when everyone leaving the city. Although it is still polluted but somehow its still pretty on its own way.

My lovely polluted city

Always surrounded by trees and less people makes me feel a bit numb sometimes. But I enjoy the company of friends and family.

Speaking of my dad being sick, it’s not easy for our family. And each time it makes me realise, as the eldest children in the family, the responsibility is getting closer. Moreover, for some reason, my stubborn daddy only listen to me. So, I will use most of the times to discuss a lot of things for him to help him gain his health back.

By the end of the year, hopefully, I will finish my study in Australia. To be honest, I am sad because I’m gonna leave Canberra. I do love the city and the people there. But nothing is permanent, so I already prepare myself to detach from my comfort zone in Canberra. Yet, I know I’m gonna be so heartbroken when the time comes.

Anyway, Happy Eid peeps! Hopefully you enjoy your time wherever you are.

May God gives you peace and love to your heart.


Aceh Trip – January 2018

Salah satu hal yang paling ditunggu saat summer break di Indonesia adalah trip ke Aceh. Its never been in my bucket list actually. But since berkawan karib dengan orang Aceh selama kuliah di Australia dan bersahabat berbelas tahun dengan orang Aceh juga, provinsi tersebut menjadi pilihan liburan kali ini. Selain itu, karena udah pernah ke Papua dan berhasil melihat matahari pagi yang terbit pertama di Indonesia, kali ini gue juga ingin menginjakan kaki di sisi paling barat Indonesia yaitu titik 0 kilometer di Pulau Sabang.

Kilometer Nol Indonesia @ Sabang - Aceh

Menurut gue, daya tarik utama dari Aceh adalah Pulau Sabang dan makanan Aceh yang enak-enak. Oh, and don’t forget about the coffee! Jadi selama 3 hari pertama gue menghabiskan waktu di Pulau Sabang. To be honest, gue suka banget sama tempat nginep gue di Freddies Santai Sumurtiga. Mereka punya private beach sendiri dan restorannya pun makanannya paling enak se-Sabang raya. You should try their breakfast and dinner experience in Freddies! The dessert that we had (apple-something-cake) super enak. Gue sama temen-temen gue sampe minta tambah lol

Kalau gue kalah sama rasa mager gue, mungkin gue akan leha-leha doang di hammock sambil bobok-bobok lucu. Tapi karena teman-teman gue super ambisius, jadi lah kami pergi ke pulau Rubiah untuk snorkeling. Orang-orang disana bilang, rombongan gue datang di saat yang tepat karena hadir ketika lewat musim liburan jadi Sabang lagi sepi dan nyaman banget.

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Pulang ke Banda, sebenarnya agenda kami tidak hanya makan-makan. City landmark yang wajib dikunjungi tentu saja Museum Tsunami, Masjid Raya dan Monumen PLTD Apung. Sejujurnya melihat perkembangan pembangunan Aceh saat ini cukup mesmerising, mengingat peristiwa Tsunami yang terjadi tahun 2004. Its so heartbreaking actually to watch the documentary of tsunami. Kayaknya karena hati gue lemah jadinya malah ga ambil foto-foto saat datang ke museum tsunami or anything related to tsunami. Dan sebagai pensiunan food blogger malah banyak foto-foto  makanan haha.

I do really love culinary experience in every city. For me, food is a solid identity dan dari makanan pun kita bisa mengenal karakter masyarakat di daerah tersebut. Misalkan, gue enggak sangka kalau orang Aceh ternyata suka banget minuman manis. Gue pikir, orang Jawa Tengah doang yang kalau minum nambahin gula berlebihan. Ternyata di Aceh juga gak ada bedanya. Jadi buat kalian yang enggak suka manis, be careful saat pesen kelapa, kopi atau teh, pastikan untuk meminta gula-nya dikurangi atau enggak pakai sama sekali. Kemudian ada salah satu rumah makan yang menyajikan “chicken steak” but for me itu persis kayak selat solo atau steak solo! Makanan favorit gue adalah ayam tangkap! Karena digoreng dengan daun kari dan daun pandan. Saking suka-nya gue sampe beli 3 box buat oleh-oleh ke Jakarta.

Selain makanan, gue suka banget dengan pilihan minuman di Aceh. Apalagi kopi!

Yang bikin khawatir dari semua ini adalah, gue takut diabetes dan kolesterol gue naik hahaha. Dan sejujurnya seminggu di Aceh gue naik 2kg (ups), but glad its back to normal again (intermittent fasting my saviour!).

Speaking of matahari. Di Aceh, gue pun berkesempatan untuk melihat matahari terbenam terakhir di Indonesia. So my life is (almost) complete.  ❤


Thank you, Aceh! You have my heart now.

How to Write a Purpose Statement for Scholarship

I may not be the smartest person nor the most high-qualified people. I made a thousand mistakes before I reached the point I am now. The only thing I have is persistent. I still remember a month ago, a friend of mine asked me if I don’t get the scholarship when will I stop? The answer is very clear: until I get it, whenever it is. I refuse to give up on my dream.

However, one thing I learned from this journey is being persistent is not enough. I have to fully prepare with (if possible) the best strategy. And luckily, I met Ferry, a friend from one of the ‘scholarship preparation group’. He taught me how to  set a ‘puzzle’. Imagine your life as a piece of puzzle, and you have to combine-compile-arrange it as one story to sell yourself. I just want to write one part from his story, for the complete part you wanna take a look to his blog here.

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Many people asked: how to get a scholarship? There are MANY answers to that kind of question. But the most important thing is before you apply to any scholarship, you should have a clear future plan. By defining it will help you to define your propose study. Usually, people think the propose study will define your future, however, your future plan will help you to choose the right education (or any requirement e.g work experience or skills) for you.

As you can see that the order to define it starts from: 1) S1 (undergraduate study); 2) Work Experience; 3) Future Plan (you can divide it into two or three section, e.g next 5 years, 15 years and 20 years); 4) S2 (master degree).

You can describe and explain what you already done or you may do (in the future) in the ‘WHAT’ column. Furthermore, you can write several list of skills you already gained or (hope) will gain in the ‘SKILLS’ column.

For example:

Let say, there is someone named Dita.

At S1, she took Law as her my major, active in several organisations (student executive body as vice-head of social service department and law student association for legal practice), and her minor focus on child and internet protection law. She also got a scholarship from the university. Several skills she gained are have a basic-intermediate knowledge about criminal law theories, basic skills to academic writing, organization skills, team-work, communication skills, etc.

While her work experience as a researcher about law aspect in new start-up digital business in Indonesia helps her to obtained skills on research to support policy advice and advisory skills on legal aspect for new start-up digital in Indonesia.

In the future, she would love to greater her role not only as a researcher in her current organization but willing to expertise in law and digital technology. She really aware that internet become the biggest part of our life and in Indonesia the legal aspect relating digital technology/internet is still developing. Since the area is really dynamic.

For her master degree, she found a major that really suitable to her interest that will support her goal: Master of Laws in Advanced Studies in Law and Digital Technologies at Leiden University.  In this major she will learn several courses such as: 1) Regulating the internet; 2) Online privacy and data protection; 3) Digital government; 4) Digital child rights. By taking the major, she will deepen her knowledge and skills regarding the area of internet protection law. Moreover, she could propose a suitable regulation for Indonesia after learn from other countries’ experience and sharing ideas with her colleague.

Voila! I already finished a propose mapping plan for my sister. 😀

The map above really helpful (at least for me). It’s not only to write your answer for (any kind of) question while you’re applying for scholarship but also to make a structure answer for interview session when you’re shortlisted.

Have a nice weekend, everyone.