this is my story…by Felicia Cherlyne Wijaya

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the writer

This is a continuation of a story of A Drink of Water by Samuel Selvon which is a part of writing assignment in English class. The story should tell what happened in Manko’s life until the rain clouds appeared.

Even the walk-back home felt like eternity. The agony he had to bear with and the pessimistic thoughts which had been beginning to eat his heart out. For how much longer did Parjanya want the aridity to last? Every single living thing in Las Lomas had been waiting for the sky to turn grey and free them all from their sufferings, but none ever came.

‘Father!’ was the word that broke Manko’s train of thought. Sunny walked up to him eagerly with a beam on his face, being all smiles. Manko couldn’t understand how his boy could still laugh despite the Earth continuously being sun-baked, day by day.

Sunny extended his hands out, holding his calabash shell, both hands. Albeit knowing that his son wanted to get rid of the dryness on his throat, Manko could do nothing but shake his head no. Usually Manko was always able to fulfill Sunny’s request, but not this time.

Although there weren’t any significant changes in Sunny’s facial expression, the father could still see through his son. The latter’s thoughts were visible to Manko. But even so what can he do? The sky refused to change.

Manko heaved a sigh as he walked into his hut and without wasting any time rested his body on the ground. As he licked his lips, Rannie, who just entered the hut, said to him, ‘All is right. We all will be dead soon. You ain’t have to force yourself too much.’

Days of living with insufficient water supply had passed since then. More and more cows and cattle were dying every day as they couldn’t withstand the scorching sun no more. Not to mention that there weren’t enough greens they could fill their stomachs with. They had no choice but to face the ends of their lives.

At one dawn, the couple was woken up by their son. Read the rest of this entry

Just one more step

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This is a part of the writing assignment in English Language class whereby the student should write a College Application Letter/Personal Essay.

The topic chosen is indicate a person who has had a significant influence on you and describe that influence.

It is not about how good you are in writing or how dramatic your experiences and you don’t have to win a Nobel Prize either…you just need to be honest about you.

***

Joshua Gunawan

It all started in a small province in central Java now recognized as Semarang. On the outskirts of town lived a little girl, who we can call Yuliani for the time being.

Growing up as part of an impecunious household of 8, the window of opportunity for the young girl was slim to none.

But living in her was a fire, a fire fueled by sheer will power to make something of herself, and to prove that she had a point to make. At the mere age of 13, just barely a teen, the chance she had been waiting for was finally at he doorstep. So she decided to part from her family to pursue her passion and chase her dream, to become a world-class badminton player.

She arrived on the scene with nothing but ambition and determination, and promptly realized the very much real struggle laid in front of her. However, this did not scare her, nor did it bring down her spirit. On the contrary, she used it as a way to motivate herself. “Just one more step”, she’d say, every time she opened her eyes to a new day of training.

These 4 words managed raise her beyond imagination and bring her through a series of prestigious tournaments including the Sea Games in 1993 and the Uber Cup in 1994 and 1996, where she finally took grasp of her dreams. This little girl, is now who I call my mom.

The rocky path she’s taken to be where she is today has molded her into the person she is. And she is what has inspired me to keep me going even when times were rough. Her 4 words still linger in the back of my mind, growing louder as my spirit deteriorates.

Even today, she continues to portray immense effort and determination to support her family, and for this I pay my respect to her. Not only has she proven to herself that she can shoot for the stars, but she has also shed light on me and the people around her. She is the epitome of hard work and determination and has instilled in me this trait I never would have come across if it hadn’t been for her guidance.

Life is our mountain we must climb to reach the top. We may come across some obstacles along the way, but we must strive to get to the top. She is living proof that hard work and determination can bring about an abundance of success. All we need to think about is the next step, “Just one more step”.

 

Numerals

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This is a part of the writing assignment in English Language class whereby the student should write a College Application Letter/Personal Essay.

The topic chosen is evaluate a significant experience, achievement, risk, or ethical dilemma and its impact on you.

It is not about how good you are in writing or how dramatic your experiences and you don’t have to win a Nobel Prize either…you just need to be honest about you.

***

Lorenzo Josua

When my parents gave me my birthday present, I was astonished to see a 50 pages book of Sudoku. For some, this gift may be unpleasant or even may be a curse set upon them. But my reaction was distinct. I went to the shelf to grab my cutter, tore down the plastic cover, and unearth the numbers that lie between.

I sat down and opened the very first page of the book. I looked up and down and right and left, only to encounter boxes, numbers, and more boxes. At first, I was questioning myself; “Why in the world am I writing numbers inside a box rather than doing something more productive like doing house chores?” That all changed when I started to write digits inside the boxes one by one. I experienced a feeling of satisfaction and excitement. It is all directly proportional to the difficulty of the puzzle itself. The harder it gets, the better I’ll do it.

Patience, of course, was a significant factor in solving the puzzle. With every correct number I write on the paper, my willpower of solving the puzzle as whole rises to a whole new level. I even went a little too far for a 12 year old at that time by sleeping at 12 o’clock, 2 hours past my curfew, just to work out the answers of a single Sudoku puzzle.

My source of determination lies on my natural affinity towards numbers and the sense of self-achievement after finishing the puzzle. It felt like I was on cloud nine. If finishing the puzzle was a star, and all of my obligations in my life are also stars, the puzzle will shine the brightest amongst the others, overshadowing all of them even though just for a short period of time.

My taste of Mathematics is born from playing the Sudoku puzzle; other than the incorporation of numerals to the problems (except algebraic equations), the approach of solving both problems are similar to each other. Why can I say so? It is because there is more than one method to solve the problem, even though the solution would be exactly the same.

Other than Physical Education, I am enthusiast in learning Mathematics at school. For most, Mathematics is seen as a burden, a thing that is created to make people’s live much difficult and complex. Some even made an acronym about Math.

MATH: Mental Abuse to Humans

But for me, Mathematics is a challenge. With every question I see, there is something in my heart that tells me to find the solution by hook or by crook. No matter how hard, how complex, or how long the solutions are, I won’t stop until I discovered the answer. So I made up another acronym.

MATH: Mental Adventure to Humans

It may sound cringe worthy but that acronym represents what’s going on inside my head. The process of finding the suitable formula to use and the way of simplifying the equation are some examples why I refer Mathematics as an adventure. As every adventure suggest, the must be an “X marks the spot” theory that supports each adventure. In this case, finding the answer of an equation is similar to finding the treasure for me.

I believe that humans can achieve their dreams with enough willpower. High school questions are starting to look like 2×2 Sudoku for me. I need a new challenge, to be thrilled, to be amazed, and to reach new heights of knowledge. I don’t want to learn by looking at 300 pages of Advanced Integration or to learn about 3 Dimensional Objects online. I want to hear the professor to educate me, to inspire me. I am ready to go to the next stage, and willing to study new things. I’ve ran out of fuel at school, may my flames of determination reignites at university.

Metamorphosis

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This is a part of the writing assignment in English Language class whereby the student should write a College Application Letter/Personal Essay.

The topic chosen is evaluate a significant experience, achievement, risk, or ethical dilemma and its impact on you.

It is not about how good you are in writing or how dramatic your experiences and you don’t have to win a Nobel Prize either…you just need to be honest about you.

***

Mahdiyyah Dwima

As a movie enthusiast, I always look up to films as a form of painting. Every frame shown has meaning behind it; otherwise the scene won’t be able to make it on the screen. One of my favorites films to date is “The Black Swan”. Darren Aronofsky has successfully directed a movie of a struggling ballerina who faces challenges as she “gets” a part as the main trophy in the upcoming event.

Nina, the main character is an obsessed artist. Throughout the first act of the film she represents the white swan. This is shown by her purity such as her room is filled with stuffed animals and her mother always looking out for her even though she’s an adult. Not until the second act of the film which she didn’t get chosen for the part. Frustrated by this, Nina acted out of her own character and seduced the teacher to get her into the part. While later she obtained the part, a new problem arised.

Despite Nina’s multiple attempts to perfect the role as the Black Swan, she couldn’t master it. From this point onward we can see the character breaking and turning into “Black Swan” as she did things that did not define her personality such as doing drugs and lying to her mother. Thus breaking her “White Swan” in order to fully master the Black Swan role. In the last act, Nina kept on performing as her stomach was bleeding because she was stabbed. As Nina finished the last move and fell to the ground, she whispered “I was perfect”.

What does it mean by the quote above?  It is brilliant how the screenwriter reminded us of what is Nina’s intention. It is to be perfect. Her vision of greatness is her dream that is why she is perfect. Nina accomplished her dream but what she had to repay for that dream is her life. Although being perfect to chase our dream can be damaging because lust can win over rational thoughts.

Coming from an average middle class family, I am that normal student at school who follows rules and rather a reserved person. What differentiate me from the most is that if I have a goal or a want, I will do everything I can to achieve it.

I was not surprised when I got placed in the lowest stream, the Technical Stream for my first year of Secondary School in Singapore. It was because I didn’t really put my effort and never had the intention to go to the local school in Singapore. Fully accepted my fate, I let the water flow. However someone then opened my eyes. This senior of mine truly aspired me to go to the Express Stream as he found I had the potential. Encouraged by this, I worked hard to be promoted. Little did I know, it also damaged me.

I started to ignore my friends, prioritizing studies over social interaction. I always thought highly of myself whenever I got the highest marks. My friends then started to give me silent treatment and left my social circle one by one. In the end I got promoted to Express Stream. But was I satisfied by it? Sacrificing my friends for the purpose of achieving my goal. With everything that I accomplished, an empty shell was what best described me at that point of my life.

Distraught by this, I apologized to them. Some came back while some didn’t because they changed; Thinking that they would rather not be acquainted with me anymore. And that is fine.

Everyone faces a change at some point of their life. It is inevitable. Otherwise how can we improve if we are stuck at the same place? It is up to us whether it is a change for the better or for the worse. As for me, my desire to attain my goal has changed me as a person. Learning from the bitter way to correct myself for better future. A metamorphosis from the Black Swan to the White Swan.

 

True Lesson

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This is a part of the writing assignment in English Language class whereby the student should write a College Application Letter/Personal Essay.

The topic chosen is evaluate a significant experience, achievement, risk, or ethical dilemma and its impact on you.

It is not about how good you are in writing or how dramatic your experiences. You don’t even have to win a Nobel Prize either…all you need is to be honest about yourself.

***

Michelle Tedja
Grade 12
Science stream
In pursue of Medical

About a year ago, i received a call from my aunt. She told me my grandmother had fainted during an evening meal during her trip in Bali. The hospitals near the area could not help her condition and she was brought to another hospital. By the time she reached the hospital, she had been fully unconscious.

The doctors there were pretty competent and they did the best they could in the given situation. Although there was not much they could do as the incident was caused by internal bleeding in the brain. Hemorrhagic stroke lead her to total unconsciousness up to this day.

My grandmother has been brought back home and taken into the care of home nurses and house call doctors. A year has passed.

I still live under the same roof as the nurses and doctors that look after my grandmother’s critical condition. I see day to day how they pay attention to such details. Stay up while the family sleeps. I could see that after a while it was no longer just work relation but they also built a connection with us. The family of the patient.

I tried to stay up overnight, yet it was more difficult than i thought. Regardless of it being a family member, the work was quite a handful and long experience. Changing sheets once every 12 hours, sanitation and other basic routines. I valued the experience and wished to continue learning from these doctors what i can.

Firstly, becoming closer to doctors that come daily made it easier for us to trust their opinion and believe that they would be completely open to strongly suggesting what is best. Furthermore, having them there around the clock gives all the family members a peace of mind.

With them around, i have felt that dealing with what happened has been a whole lot easier. We take comfort knowing that a family member is under good hands. They are not paid as much as hospital workers but the attitude i get from them is much more lively.

Knowing and experiencing what nurses and doctors can do inspired me to go after the very career. I wish to have the same impact to others as they have had towards me in this sensitive time.

In addition, i have always found giving is better than receiving and that is one of the lessons my grandmother has taught me to never forget. The home call doctors and nurses with their small wages but high spirits has helped me to confirm just how true this lesson is.

 

BURGREENS ORGANIC EATERY by Kenzie Florencia Hartono

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At Organik Klub, Tebet

It was my first visit to Burgreens. I have got their home-made dishes and snacks delivered for a few times, and I even had joined their “Alkalizing and Balancing” 5-day catering program, but I have never enjoyed their dishes directly at their restaurant before. Burgreens actually has two branches: Burgreens Bintaro (South Tangerang) and Burgreens Tebet (Central Jakarta). Here at Tebet, the restaurant is located above—at the second floor— of Organik Klub, an organic produce store, which is at the first floor of the building. Organik Klub sells everything organic, starting from vegetables, nut milks, home-made vegan cheese, snacks, other cooking/baking ingredients, etc. It also supplies organic produce for Burgreens.

When I first arrived, the first thing I noticed was Read the rest of this entry

Sate Padang H. Ajo Manih by Joshua Gunawan

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Starting out as a small restaurant in the province of Padang, Sate Padang H. Ajo Manih had already proven to be a competitor in the culinary industry. Its business skyrocketed and by the year 2005 the restaurant made its debut in the city of Jakarta.

Sate Padang H. Ajo Manih now has 3 branches in Jakarta, its most prominent, being its first restaurant in Rawamangun, with the other 2 also standing tall, in Pulo gadung and Cempaka Putih, the branch I recently paid a visit to.

Its venue is very convenient, located on the street of Cempaka Putih Timur Raya, laid directly in front of KFC and beside it, lined an array of vividly lighted cafes and restaurants.

On reaching the restaurant, I was generously welcomed by Read the rest of this entry

SOCIEATY by Farah Darlene

 

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What is SOCIEATY?

Socieaty is an upscale restaurant located in the heart of Jakarta, Indonesia. It is a part of the Les Amis group based in Singapore which is affiliated to a number of concepts (restaurants) back in the Merlion country.  Being a part of the group has allowed Socieaty’smenu to incorporate dishes from the group’s existing concepts of European cuisine. Therefore, diners of Socieaty can select from popular dishes from sister concepts La Strada (Italian trattoria), Bistro Du Vin (French bistro), La Taperia (Spanish) and artisanal tarts from Tarte by Cheryl Koh, pastry chef of the flagship Les Amis restaurant.

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Location

Asides from being located in the capital city of Jakarta, this eatery is based on the prestigious Plaza Indonesia. It is placed on the 1st floor across AMKC Atelier, another restaurant but of another specialty, namely deserts.

As the shopping center that this establishment is a part of is located in the heart of the city, transportation from all around Jakarta would be relatively easy. Speaking from personal experience Read the rest of this entry

WARUNG MEVVAH by Michelle Tedja

Ecopark by Tah Andrew Ryan

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Hello Travelers, in this section of my Jakarta Hot Tour Spots, I am going to introduce Ecopark, a place filled only by lush greeneries.

Located inside of Taman Impian Jaya Ancol, you can immerse yourself on what nature have to offer and let go of everyday stresses. But of course, only that won’t do for a reason to visit the place. So, here is a quick preview of what they offer. Entrance fee and opening hours I can leave this section blank, because, the entrance fee is 0, which if course means it is completely free! It is opened for visitors at an early 5 am and it closes at 6 pm. You may think your local park is also free; it is even open 24/7, so why bother? Don’t leave yet as the place still have many things to offer.

Diverse Faunas

Of course it has a lot of tree species, given that it is a park, but nature is not complete without the accompanying animals. They recently opened Read the rest of this entry

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