Philadelphia, I’m in Love!

Hi!

Alhamdulillah saya menulis lagi. Sudah dari seabad yang lalu rasanya saya terakhir menulis. Heuh, suka malu sama diri sendiri karena jarang menulis. Maapkeun.

Anyway, saya kemarin habis jalan-jalan dari Philadelphia and I’m in love with the city! Philadelphia itu cantik sekali. Nggak tahu kenapa, saya merasa Philadelphia itu kaya Bandung. Saya ke Philadelphia karena diajak seorang teman. Lumayan dapat akomodasi gratisan.

Di Philadelphia saya ke beberapa museum, (ngomong-ngomong, saya selama di Amerika mainnya ke museum terus. Museum di Amerika keren-keren sih!), dari historical museum sampai art museum.

Pertama ketika sampai, saya ke bekas penjara namanya Eastern State Penitentiary. Saya agak-agak ngeri sih sama tempat ini. Ya, soalnya ini bekas penjara dan dulu orang-orang di dalamnya dihukum dengan cara yang lumayan sadis. Bentuk bangunannya seperti benteng dan gede banget.

Tempat kedua yang saya kunjungi itu Philadelphia’s Magic Garden, dan tempat ini keren banget! Di sebelah tempat ini, ada jalan setapak kecil dimana ada banyak mural di dinding-dinding bangunan. Jadi disini itu ada banyak barang-barang bekas dan pecahan-pecahan kaca yang ditata secara artistik menjadi sebuah maha karya /apadeh. Eh, tapi beneran kok, semua yang ada disini itu “sampah”. As it said, the place was magical and i got fascinated by it.

Sebelum ke tempat penginapan saya sempet mampir ke University of Pennsylvania. Universitasnya keren! Tapi tetep cinta saya masih nyangkut di Dickinson /ea.

Sebelum ke Phylli, saya nggak tahu kalau saya bakal nginep di panti jompo gitu. Tapi, panti jompo disini keren. Panti jomponya lebih kaya apartemen gitu sih. Terus fasilitasnya lengkap banget, dari mini theater sampai rumah sakit!

Hari minggunya, saya pergi ke Liberty Bell. Ini itu bel simbol kemerdekaan gitu deh. Dan belnya patah di bagian bawah. Satu paket sama Liberty Bell, saya juga pergi ke Independence Hall. Jadi ini itu tempat dimana US Declaration of Independence lahir. Saya juga pergi ke Headed to White House Museum – National Constitution Center. Semua tempat tadi ada di satu komplek.

Sebelum pulang, saya mampir ke Elferth’s Alley. Ini itu jalan dan permukiman tertua di US. Lagi-lagi, i got fascinated! Nggak tahu kenapa, suka banget sama jalan ini. Atmosfir eropa-nya kerasa banget sih (hm, padahal saya juga belum pernah bener-bener ke eropa. Sekalinya kesana cuma buat transit). Setelah itu kita ke ceramic shop and studio yang saya lupa namanya. Disana keramiknya keren-keren dan harganya juga keren.

Jalan-jalan saya di Philadelphia diakhiri dengan satu cone Franklin Fountain ice cream yang melegenda!

Thank you, dear Philadelphia. I will visit you again sometime in the future!

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Go Home?

Hi!

It has been a month since my last post here. So lazy, huh? I apologize. There were some stuffs going on.

Anyway, my exchange year will end soon. Happy? Yes. Sad? Of course! It’s not sad anymore , it’s heartbreaking. I feel like my heart gonna break into little pieces. I have cried couple times when I remember that my exchange year is going to reach its time limit.

Akhir-akhir ini hati rasanya campur aduk sekali. Dari mulai senang sampai sedih. Senang karena sebentar lagi bisa ketemu sama keluarga, temen-temen. Bisa makan bakso, soto, nasi padang, kupang, sampai jajan-jajan pinggir jalan. Bisa dengar adzan lagi. But, I also feel so sad. Because I’ll leave everything that I’ve built for the past 7+ months and never known when I can comeback. I feel like, why I should go home when I’m already at home?

Saya sadar, saya harusnya siap dengan hal ini. Karena dari awal pun saya sudah tahu kalau program ini ada batas waktunya. But, everything seems so hard to be accepted. Dulu, saya pikir saya nggak bakal sejatuh cinta ini sama Amerika. Tapi setelah 7 bulan lebih disini, saya nggak siap pulang ke Indonesia. Saya sudah terlanjur nyaman. Rasanya waktu berlalu terlalu cepat. Rasanya baru kemarin saya duduk di pesawat yang bawa saya terbang dari Indonesia ke Amerika. Saya belum siap untuk menata hati lagi. Saya belum siap untuk adaptasi lagi. Because I know, everything will change within a year.

Saya tahu, harusnya saya nggak boleh sedih. Harusnya saya senang-senang di bulan-bulan akhir ini. Tapi, nggak bisa dipungkiri juga kalau saya selalu merasa sedih tiap ingat bulan Juni nanti saya bakal kembali ke Indonesia. I’ll leave my home for another home.

Tapi, saya selalu berusaha untuk menerima. I always try to convince myself that there will be no goodbye. It just a see you again. Saya juga mulai menata lagi mimpi-mimpi saya. Saya meyakinkan diri saya kalau akhir program ini adalah pintu bagi saya untuk meraih impian saya yang lain. Saya yakin, saya pasti bisa kembali lagi suatu saat nanti. Mungkin memang butuh waktu yang nggak sebentar, tapi saya yakin kesempatan itu ada.

When Indonesian Kid did Ski

Hi Fellas!

I know it’s already Monday and I supposed to update my blog last Saturday/Sunday. Actually I wanted to but I couldn’t do it because…..

I WENT TO SKI TRIP LAST WEEKEND!

Yas! This Indonesian kid went to a ski trip for the first time in her life after -almost 18 years.

So, me and the AFS people went up to Morris, Pennsylvania to do ski. The ski resort called Ski Sawmill.

It was so cold when we went there. Because the temperature dropped to -27 degree celcius or so. But, the Sawmill was so pretty especially when sunset.

I began to ski on Saturday morning after breakfast. First we had a group lesson about how to walk with the ski gear. It was so hard for me even for just stood up with the gear because i kept sled down. I needed an extra time to do that. After a little while I finally could stand up. The next challenge was to walk with it. And the struggle was real. It wasn’t easy to walk with the gear.I kept sled and fell down so many times, literally, many. And because of it, the instructor decided to give me a “private” lesson. My instructor name is Trish. He’s such a great instructor and he was so patient to teach me how to ski because I was so dumb.

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me and eisha before all the “pain” began

After I could walk and handle myself a little bit, Trish showed me how to go uphill with T-bar.  And again, the struggle was real. It was uneasy as I watched people did it. I kept fell down and fell down and fell down. Once I could go uphill with it, I couldn’t get off of it. I tried to gett off as Trish told me how to do it, but I kept fell down again and again. Finally I could get off of it and then the other challenge faced me.

It was sledding from uphill to downhill. I was so scared to do it and I kept fell down so many times. I was so scare because I imagined how if I crashed or how if I hit the other people.

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me tryin to look like a pro 😉

After the lesson ended, I took a break with Eisha (fyi, she’s my favorite ski partner). We took a break for about two (or more) hours.

We back to the the hill after we got enough food to eat. And this time, I kind of proud of myself because I got better. So much better. I could handle my self, I could stop without fell down (even though sometimes I still did it), and I could turn around. And then I began to say that I love ski! This time, bad things happened to Eisha. She fell down so hard and hurt her wrist so bad. So, we went to the ski patrol to get first aid (well, it’s actually some ice) for her.

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poor my eisha

On Saturday night, we played some card games. And it was so fun because whoever lost we would put some make up on his/her face. And when we played the joker games (I actually don’t know the name of the game, but it’s a card game that whoever get the joker he/she lose). And it turned out that Esben lost, so we put some make up on his face. We also learnt how to curse on another languages. I know it’s so bad but hell yeah it’s fun hahaha. It’s so intercur(se)tural learning :p

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sorry not sorry Esben :p

The next day, I went to ski again with Eisha and Rocio (but she did snowboard). I felt like my skill in ski improved. We did it for about two hours then we took a break. After the break, we went to tubing area with Hadia because we got vouchers for tubing. Tubing was also so much fun! Especially when we connected our tube and sled together. After some times Kasumi came and joined us. We did tubing for about an hour.

We had lunch after that. And then we back to the bunk house and just chill and played some games while we’re waiting for the time to go back. Before we went back, we took a group photo in front of the bunk house.

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AFS never tired of group picture

Ski was so much fun! And somehow I learnt something from it. Not only learnt how to ski, but I also learnt that sometimes in life we would fall down so many times and hurt ourselves but once we’re willing to stand up and try again, we would nail it! All we need in life is just to be brave to try something that seems “impossible” for us to do. Because we never know if we never try. Like me,  It seemed impossible for me to do ski in the first place, but once I tried to do it, it turned out that I can do it and I love it!

Xoxo,

Yasmin.

New York is Never Enough

Hi fellas!

It has been a month since my last post, well, I apologize.

First I wanna say Happy Eid Al-Mawlid An-Nabawi and Merry Christmas!

Time flies so fast, in about 6 days we will have a new beginning. I’m kinda happy and sad. But hey! I don’t write this post to talk about it. I wanna talk about New York! So here we go;

Two weeks ago my AFS chapter had a trip to New York and because I really wanna go there since forever, so I decided to go. New York isn’t not that far from WDC. It’s just 4 hours driving. It’s like Malang-Lumajang without any traffic jam (yea, of course).

In New York i just went to some places in the town because I got lost with my friend, Margaux, there. Yea, we went along the way to New York and we got lost. But, hey it was fun. I mean got lost in New York, isn’t it sound fun??! Over there, Me and my squad (wohoo!) went to Central Park. In Central Park we saw New York City from the high rock. So in the Central Park there are a lot of “high rock”. And from the rock we can see (almost) the entire Manhattan. Beside that there are some places that we can visit there. Like the zoo, ice skating ring, and etc. Before we went to the Central Park, Me and Margaux went to Rockfeller Park to meet the other after we got lost. We also went to Broadway, and of course Time Square! It was so much fun there. I mean hey! It’s Broadway and Time Square. Being In Time Square was making me amazed. MY DREAM CAME TRUE! And it was just unbelievable. I could stand in Time Square and felt the atmosphere of New York. Someone said, “If you can make it here (New York), yu can make it anywhere.” And I’ve made it there. The question now is: Can I make it anywhere else? I hope I can.
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Well, when I was there I didn’t get the opportunity to see The Empire State Building or Uno Headquarter or 9/11 Memorial Park or The Statue of Liberty, but for me those things are the reason I should come back to New York soon someday.

New York is never enough. There are always some reasons to go back to New York. See you soon, New York!

New Life Has Begun!

Hello from Washington, D.C.!

How is life anyone? I hope everything is alright.

Sudah lama sejak post terakhir saya. Sudah banyak yang tanya “kapan nge-blog lagi?” jawabannya “sekarang!”

Well, for those who doesn’t know, now I’m living in Washington, D.C.!

Sudah terhitung 17 hari saya berada di Negeri Paman Sam. Saya kesini bukan dalam rangka kuliah, atau plesiran. Saya disini karena saya sekarang adalah Indonesian Youth Ambassador through Kennedy Lugar-Youth Exchange and Study. Alhamdulillah saya diberi kesempatan oleh Allah untuk bisa merasakan hidup selama satu tahun di negeri orang. Saya nggak sendiri, ada 131 teman saya yang lain, yang sekarang sudah berada di beberapa sudut di dunia. Kita semua adalah bagian dari AFS/YES INAYPScNH 15-16: #LangkahAnakBangsa

After farewell party in Teater Pewayangan Kautaman #LangkahAnakBangsa

Banyak yang tanya, “Nanti ngapain di Amerika?” jawabannya:

Akan ada banyak hal yang saya lakukan disini. Saya akan hidup dan tinggal bersama keluarga angkat di sini, saya akan bersekolah di salah satu SMA di sini, saya akan melakukan banyak kegiatan bersama chapter saya, melakukan volunteering, mengenalkan budaya Indonesia, dan masih banyak hal yang lain. Yang pasti semua itu InshaaAllah baik bagi saya.

“Tinggal sama keluarga angkat?”

Yap, bener. Saya akan tinggal dengan keluarga angkat selama di sini. Nama keluarga saya adalah Caldwell. Mereka adalah keluarga “tinggi” dan saya kecil sendiri. Kecil umur maupun fisiknya. Kalau di indonesia saya jadi anak sulung, di sini saya jadi anak bungsu. Saya punya 3 kakak yang sudah keluar dari rumah. Jadi saya -awalnya- akan tinggal bertiga dengan Mom dan Komet (kucing keluarga saya). Dad hanya di rumah saat weekend. Tapi alhamdulillah, selama beberapa minggu kedepan saya akan punya double-placement brother dari Greenland! Jadi saya punya saudara seumuran, hehe.

“17 hari udah ngapain aja?”

Udah jalan-jalan dan sekolah! Hehe. Sebenarnya masih baru ke beberapa tempat di sini. Seperti National Building Museum, Washington National Cathedral, Einstein Monument, dan American Art&Potrait Museum. FYI, hampir semua museum disini FREE! Dan museumnya nggak membosankan. Jadi saya seneng banget dan bersyukur banget dapet placement di D.C. Nanti-nanti mau explore museum lagi.

Hari ini tepat seminggu saya sekolah. Saya sekolah di salah satu Public School terbesar di D.C., yakni Woodrow Wilson Senior High School. Sekolah saya ini gede banget lah pokoknya. Bangunannya aja ada 4 bagian; Main building, A wing, B wing, and C wing. Sekolah saya juga 4 lantai, punya auditorium yang kece abis, dua gymnasium, football/soccer/hockey field, dan kolam renang. Ya bayangin sendiri deh seberapa besarnya. Maskot sekolah saya itu macan. Jadi sekolah saya julukannya Wilson Tiger. Seminggu sekolah bikin capek juga, karena sistemnya moving class dan kelas saya tersebar di semua bagian dan lantai. Dan sialnya loker saya nggak mau kebuka, jadi saya bawa semua barang setiap hari :”). Tapi yang saya suka dari sekolah Amerika adalah saya bisa pilih pelajaran yang saya suka. Saya bisa ambil pelajaran yang nggak mungkin pernah ada di sekolah saya di Indonesia, seperti Model United Nation class dan Piano Lab class!

Einstein Monument
Inside the Washington National Cathedral (1)
Inside the Washington National Cathedral (2)
Happinese face huh?
I love this museum!

Eh iya, saya habis masuk berita!

Jadi ceritanya saya diwawancara sama VOA Indonesia karena saya ikut upacara di rumah Kedutaan Besar Indonesia untuk Amerika. Ya sebenernya cuma bentar banget sih, tapi saya seneng aja. Di Indonesia mana pernah saya masuk TV, hehe :p

Setelah upacara!

Ah ceritanya sampai di sini dulu ya. Nantikan post saya berikutnya! InshaaAllah akan rajin ngepost selama jadi anak exchange, hehe.

P.S., buat yang mau kepoin saya bisa langsung ke: ask.fm/ysmnaml | Jangan lupa search #LangkahAnakBangsa di Instagram!

See you, soon!