Lund, Jogja dan segala sesuatu di antaranya

Pulang tahun ini bisa dibilang sedikit di luar rencana. Awalnya kami berniat pulang ke Indonesia di akhir tahun, sekalian mengungsi dari musim dingin Swedia yang ajaib. Juga menunggu tabungan agak ”mendingan” dulu setelah libur panjang musim panas tahun lalu 😅.

Tapi dua kabar baik di bulan Maret membuat kami menata ulang semua rencana perjalanan.

Pertama, adik ipar saya menerima lamaran dari calon suaminya waktu itu. Rencana pernikahan pun disusun dan waktu yang tepat bagi semuanya adalah di bulan Juli. Kedua, tes urin yang saya lakukan menunjukkan bahwa saya positif hamil dengan perkiraan lahir Desember 2018, sehingga tidak mungkin melakukan perjalanan di bulan-bulan itu. Dua hal ini, kemudian membuat kami memindahkan rencana pulang ke Indonesia ke bulan Juli.

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Segenggam Daun So dan Sepetak Tanah di Belakang Rumah

40cdd708-cefc-4922-b190-038d5cee858aPohon Melinjo, yang bernama latin Gnetum gnemon, lebih lazim disebut dengan pohon So di kampung halaman saya. Saya tidak tahu persis dari mana sebutan itu berasal, tapi pohon So adalah salah satu tanaman yang mudah ditemui di halaman belakang rumah-rumah.

Mungkin karena pohon ini termasuk mudah tumbuh di tanah yang kering dan berkapur. Mungkin juga karena pohon ini memiliki banyak fungsi: daun dan kulit buahnya bisa disayur, sementara buahnya diolah menjadi emping.

Tanpa saya sadari, pohon So telah menjadi bagian penting dari memori saya atas kampung halaman. Salah satu hal yang paling saya ingat dari masa kecil saya adalah menyaksikan nenek saya memanen melinjo dari dua pohon besar yang ada di belakang rumahnya. Dan saya yang memunguti buah-buah melinjo, memisahnya sesuai warna: hijau, kuning, atau merah.

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Love’s Most Frequent Question | Yang Sering Kita Tanyakan, tentang Cinta

We often ask ourself what love really is. A definite question for which everyone comes up with different answer.

They say it’s a commitment.

They believe it’s a trust.

They claim it’s a friendship.

They define it as an acceptance.

For Zaki and me, love is THIS.

Whatever we have and share in the last 12 years. The thing that binds us together no matter what we’ve been through. Love is the way he makes me laugh the loudest and cry the saddest, and vice versa. Love is whenever we argue, we fight, and we hate each other, just to finally realise that we’re only two stubborn persons who can’t live, normally, without one another.

For us, love is about finding all the possible definitions, together.

Happy wedding anniversary, Zaki! Cheers to the answers we’ve defined and a lot more we are yet to find!

Lund, March 7, 2018

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Wajah saya mendadak sumingrah saat kami melewati satu toko di Klostergatan. Sayapun berhenti sebentar. Menatap etalase di depan saya dengan mata berbinar. “Waaaahhhh, bagus banget sepatunya,” kata saya sambil menunjuk sepatu boots berbahan kulit dan berwarna dusty pink. Suami saya hanya tersenyum kecil lalu berujar: “Ada apa sih dengan kamu dan sepatu?”

Ya. “Ada apa dengan saya dan sepatu?”. Pertanyaan itu juga kerap saya ajukan ke diri saya sendiri. Di antara sekian banyak aksesoris yang diidentikkan dengan wanita, saya paling mudah tergoda oleh sepatu. Koleksi saya bukan sangat banyak. Karena bagaimanapun, obsesi seringkali dibatasai oleh keadaan dan kemampuan. Haha. Jadi seberapapun terobsesinya saya dengan sepatu, saya tak sampai harus punya lemari khusus. Meskipun, harus saya akui, saya pernah punya puluhan alas kaki di waktu yang bersamaan (dulu sebelum negara api menyerang 😀 ).

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What to Expect the First Year (in Sweden)*

People say the first year of everything is actually the hardest. What about the first year living in Sweden? Well, it’s not easy, I must say. But, if you know what to expect, you will know how to deal with that.

  1. Bureaucracy

Welcome to Sweden!

First thing first: get your personnumer and your Swedish ID as soon as possible. These two things are essential for your new life in Sweden. Brace yourself during these times, as Skatteverket will be your number one office to visit. Expect a long queue so come to the office early. Make sure you provide every document they need and double check no document is missed. Then, whenever you are in doubt, ask!

I know that coming to Skatteverket office over and over can be really exhausting (and boring!), but it is unquestionably important to keep your eyes on the whole process. I personally had quite an experience with Skatteverket when my personnumer application was rejected but I didn’t know it sooner because for some reasons I didn’t receive the rejection letter. Later I knew it was because my residence permit was almost expired at that time so I needed to renew it first to be able to apply for personnumer. Thus, if you found something suspicious with your application, like the duration of the process or no reply after two weeks, do not hesitate to check it in nearby Skatteverket office.

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New Kid on The Block*

15871834_10158132364510094_4498883074623820572_nI can still remember, vividly, the first moment when I got off from Öresundtåg at Lund’s Central Station. The cold winter air was slapping on my face like waking me up from a long dream, and I whispered excitedly to myself: “Okay, this is real.” But then, I stepped out outside the station and that was when my new kid on the block moment began.

My first days in Sweden were a combination of anxiety and excitement. Everything was just so different from my home country or any other places I have visited: the weather app seems to never predict correctly since the weather changes almost all the times, the shops close quite early, and everyone seems too busy to have small talks with stranger. I felt lonely and detached. I felt like everybody was looking at me as if there was something wrong with my face. I also felt completely lost in translation, literally and figuratively. I remember going to the nearest shop worrying about what the shopkeeper might say in Swedish.

Then, I realised that most of the times, those were all just my own uneasiness. I mean nobody said moving to a new place would be easy. But, it is actually a choice, to drown into hassle that I create myself, or to start embrace every moment and get familiar with the Swedish ways of life. I chose the latter and made some changes.

How, exactly?

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Four Days and Three Nights in Gothenburg

On the last week of December 2017, we had an unplanned trip to Gothenburg. It was a simultaneous one which needed less than a week to prepare. This is new as usually we plan a trip way too far from the D day 😅. We were previously uncertain about having a trip for the year end. Mostly because we were kinda broke after the long trip on August-October. Haha. Also because we were about to move to a new place by the end of the month. We thought that even if we wanted to go somewhere, it was gonna be on early January when things would already be settled.

But then, Zaki said he desperately needed a break from his work, Hayya was having a winter break already, and every one I know was traveling 😄 so we thought the time couldn’t be more perfect. Soon I started to calculate this and that to make itinerary in a short time. Zaki said he wanted an easy trip. The one that didn’t require so much adventure like we normally had :D. He just wanted to relax and escape from his routine. I came up with some ideas. I proposed Prague (because we heard that it’s so beautiful), Jordan (because we have good friends whose families live there), Aarhus (because we wanted to pay a visit to some friends) and somewhere in Sweden (because it’s easier, cheaper, and less hassle).

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