Practically About Anything

Firstly, I'd like to extend very belated Christmas and Idul Adha greetings to those who celebrated them and best wishes for the New Year to everyone. It's been quite long since my last post and, believe me, I actually had a lot of ideas for this blog but somehow couldn't bring myself to write them down. Holiday blues? Maybe! There are a few things that I'd like to share, though.

This Christmas gave me mixed feelings. Again, I didn't have a White Christmas, though I've been dreaming about it for months. It's my third Christmas here and not once had each one snowed! It was even kinda warm this year. Some people were thankful, saying how nice it is to be able to walk outside and not freeze over. As for me, I was FRIGHTENED. I agree that the "nice climate" is in fact an indication of the global warming. If the process continues at this pace, or even faster (accelerated every year thanks to our destructive habit!), we will have a global flood way earlier than we expect -- and today we don't have Noah and his ark! Watching "Ice Age 2: The Melt" on DVD wasn't helping -- it only strengthened my fear.

But at the same time, I felt blessed more than ever. The Christmas Eve service was so beautiful, and I choked to tears while singing Christmas carols with the rest of the congregation. I finally managed to redo my apartment AND made the general cleaning, so I could invite my friends over for Christmas. I got many Christmas presents from friends and colleagues -- so many that I will have to be creative to have them all stored in this small, one bedroom apartment without making it look cluttered. I'm still thinking of how best to handle those countless cookies and cakes and chocolates, hehhehe... it's really heartening to know that a great number of people do care about me.

"What have I done to deserve such kindness?" I poured out to Boe.

His answer struck me: "It's probably not what you've done. Maybe it's a message, or a 'down payment' for your future generosity to your friends and other people." (Well, these are not exactly his words, but mirip-mirip deh!)

Ain't that so true. I just hope Iwill never forget that I've got 'paid forward' for all these and that I'm obliged to spread similar treatment to those around me.

On a not-so-pleasant note: of course, Saddam Hussein's execution. I made my point sometimes back that I oppose death penalty. I hold the view that one's life isn't their property, let alone other people's. I echo Gandhi that an eye for an eye makes the whole world blind. Utopic? You bet. But some utopism satisfies me most of the time. And I rest assured that Saddam's death will not halt the violence in the Middle East. Seeing the man's expression when he was about to put out his head really broke my heart. He seemed much older, with the calmness of someone who is aware that his life is drawing to a close.

Saddam's tragic faith, however, doesn't necessarily make him a hero, though he's been a symbol of a "fight against Western domination and neo-colonialism" among certain societies and groups. I tend to agree with Pakde Isnogud's assessment, as 'quoted' by Ndoro Kakung Pecas Ndahe, that our own frustration resulted in hailing Saddam despite his aggression towards Iran and Kuwait years ago (as well as his policy on the Kurdish). We even named Kuwait "antek-antek Amerika" for turning to the US to get some help when Saddam invaded Kuwait -- and forgot that it is the Kuwaitis' RIGHT to defend themselves, in whatever ways they choose.

A few days after Saddam's execution, Gerald Ford had a lavish funeral. Observing the different treatments these two former leaders received on the last days of their lives, I couldn't help but conclude that history is indeed cruel.


Silverlines said...

Indeed it broke my heart seeing the old guy walking towards his death .. Nevertheless, I didn't see any glimpse of fear in his face. Which is good in a way, showing that he believes what he believes is right.

Happy New Year Girl .. May this year bring you lots of happiness and peace.

mita said...

iya sist, aku benci winter di pittsburgh. tapi kok aku ketar-ketir ya winter di pittsburgh (yang katanya harsh) itu sangat2 mild taun ini. hyaaa, takutttt

moose said...

happy new year, jeng. tried to call you from Lombok. Miss you.

nananias said...

kalo postingannya bagus gini, delay gapapa deh :D lagian dari indo bukanya juga susah hhuhuhuhu..

btw, i got 3 bedrooms in my house, ample spaces to store those presents! uhuk!