i’m home again … in ambon!

leaving beloved amboina past few decades, finally i am able to make my home coming. flabbergasted that i missed so many things as the years goes by. i used to live in secluded-tranquil-leafy bay overlooking the hills and this moment i have to “jump” on honking roads, blaring and blasting motorbikes and cars in the city centre.

sunset over leihitu peninsula (c) ukirsari 2012

Continue reading “i’m home again … in ambon!”


bi bayurlj ben

in this chun jie, also known as chinese lunar new year, the beginning of spring festival or xin chia, i found myself blanketed by the serenity of thousand red candle lights. within a temple in the old quarter of tangerang.

Continue reading “bi bayurlj ben”

nyerang-i gyalla mar-yul rak

it’s a heaven to be back to ladakh that affectionately addressed as mar-yul or broken moon from its people.  after longing for years, i am so glad to be here again with nick.  only us, pale moon and snow capped mountains. my ability to speak in ladakhi, arise again and i am so grateful to get helped by every single ladagspa who’s correcting my pronounciation, tell the newly words and give support to talk in one of the languages that i love to speak.

ladakh range (c) ukirsari 2011

and we’d got experience to attending tse-chu, one of the most sacred religious festivals in ladakh. It’s a festival about guru padmasambhava who gets reincarnation many times.

i touched by a lama who dearly address me with a ladakhi-tibetan name, instead of my first name and another given name that i’d got in india few years ago.

when we’re about to leave, i turn my head to remember an old tibetan proverb: this place is surrounded by high passes, so only best friends or the worst enemies will pay a visit. we definitely will be back someday as we feel home here.

this visit i dedicated to our beloved parents. and for my mum and dad, i already tied my tar-chok (praying flags) in the heights of 4,800 masl. wish your happiness ever after as we pray in this heaven on earth, tsering shik!

night of a thousand lanterns in p’ing-xi

beloved mum and dad, i would like to ask; did you receive my sky lantern already?

(c) ukirsari 2011

sky lantern or tian deng in local language also known as konming lantern, taken from the shape of zhuge liang’s hat, a minister in old chinese world and the lantern was used to be a signal within war periods and the usage of its lantern brought to ilha formosa or taiwan whenever the natives of fujian province migrated in the era of qing dynasty.

(c) ukirsari 2011

refer to chang douan-xie, a guy who attended p’ing-xi lantern festival altogether with his family; two children and his wife, he told me that long long time ago, in the celebration of chinese lunar new year or known in local language as chun jie, marauders are coming to screw up people in p’ing-xi. that’s why the locals hidden themselves up to the mountainous range of shifen to sandiaoling plateau. the village’s keepers will send sky lanterns whenever marauders has gone and the people can be home again.  “in the end, locals take the uniqueness of sending sky lantern as part of their tradition and it will be held at the first moonlight after chinese lunar new year or yuanxiao jie,” stated douan.

last year, in november 2010, with kindly help of my friend’s family in chiangmai, northern thailand, i do just like locals to lit up the lanterns and float a small papier-mache boat in the river for my beloved parents. and that moment created idea in my mind that someday i should visit p’ing-xi zhexian to do the quite same thing in the traditional way.

all i need just ask the volunteer about tian deng that i would like to buy. pink is for love and friendship, red is a celebration, white is speaking about peace and health then orange is for prosperity. how about blue? i take this one, since it’s my favourite colour and a symbol in between me and dad; we’re as travelers and his dedication to the navy and how we love the seas and oceans. then one of my mum’s favourite colour as well.

(c) alex pangestu 2011

i was so amazed with those volunteers, even when english taken place as a language barrier, they’re keep smiling and handed a brush and ink for me.  and here i am, whenever people are busy to write in hanyu (chinese characters), tieng viet (vietnamese), nihongo (japanase) or hangeoul (south korea), i am confident to write in hanacaraka, an old-ancient javanese characters that my parents teach me since i was a kid. and gladly, i wrote it very well. a small poem, a pray, my dedication … full of love.

my heart just so blue, i feel so warm in the middle of a mid-plateau in the winter time, surrounded by many many people around the world and my tian deng fly that high, can be seen ascending amongst thousand lanterns in the evening sky. locals belief, tian deng is a personal message for  heaven.

so, what can i say more, mum and dad …. i do miss you and i love you so. hoping you are happy to see my lantern and understand that i will always remember you, in my own way.

a personal achievement, a spatial consciousness

listed amongst my favourites or hobbies is reading. can spend this activity whilst i am in the plane, catch the next flight, rainy days and awaiting my beloved one back from abroad. frankly speaking, my choice mostly travel guide books and its maps. therefore, mapping and recognizing processes already done in my mind, long before i do travel or even decided to go. i do enjoy  learn and getting excited in finding information through the map and explanation (culture, nature and architectural mostly), as high as the value of doing travel itself. even can not be generalized like pictures, for me personally, a map telling a rich story and a spatial consciousness.

taking aback to this enjoyment of mapping and reading, comments from some fellows that pretty familiar in my ears;  “so, this will be your next destination, uh?” and same answer all the time, “not like that, i am learning about spatial consciousness in the destinations.”

and it’s really work when i go travel. i like to do check and re-check the interesting points that mentioned by map and if i find brand new thing or kind differences, i’ll make a note. and write to the publisher in the way to updating. so far i do some and got nicely reply from them. this is what I found recently. my name’s mentioned in the readers’ letter in the rough guide hongkong and macau 2009.   my heartfelt thank goes to rough guide (RG) and i share this personal achievement for my beloved parents and nicholas. i love you!

a wonderful person, an evening at royal albert hall

long time ago, i have favourite couple friends; jachan (italian) and cathy (american) who decided to set up brand new  life in italy. and the simplest way for jachan to address his beloved one is “a wonderful person“. i tried to understand what is the deepest meaning in that affectionate way to tell people about cathy, until i feel the same about someone who i love very much.

it was around a week before september 24th, when nicholas told me about reduction ticket  price  for classic fm live in royal albert hall. unfortunately, it’s not side-by-side’s seat. but one farthest to the other. all i can say, “just wait. if there’s our karma, it will be ours.”

i don’t know exactly what he did, until he tells me happily. “yes, confirmed. two seats for both of  us, side by side. mum and dad will attend the event too.” maybe just a coincident, but it’s something nice for me. even four of us will be seated per couple. not all in the same row. and our tickets are cheaper compared theirs for sure 🙂

during the event, my heart is burst of happiness. it’s a great classic concert, with solo violist sarah chang –a prodigy when she’s 6 years old playing solo– and the priests –tree tenors– on stage. i hold his hand tight. probably very tight. this is the first time i am going to see a classic concert, after my dad and my violin master passed away.

at that night, i can feel the term ‘wonderful person’ in the beautiful way. not copy from janchan, but understand it completely. not only about nicholas as  my beloved one. but the way he knowing me and to understand. he’s not complaint about i leave my violin class. only once asked “why?” and i try to answer, “when i decided to learn violin, i tied my heart to the instrument and the person who teach me. when he’s away, i feel something not complete. maybe i’m too childish, but i am sure, none of the new master can do his or her best as my master did.”

and another sentimental reason, of course my dad. who always encourage me to play. i remember his company to find a nice violin 3/4 when i am young. then 4/4 scale when i turn adult. he’s so touched when i buy a new violin with my own money after back from japan, 10 years ago. i address my newest violin as “tonska” [taken from russian nickname for ‘anton’ since mine is an anton breton’s product, made in 1979].

nicholas show me the reality. day will be following by another day. so its life. my beloved dad and violin master may go, but the essence of beauty still remain. about listening violin. something that i do really love before. something that connecting my life with my dearly dad and my violin master, pak le.

i love the concert from the beginning. when the choir singing carmina burana. when the priests is singing pie jesu. when the fireworks spreading behind the pillars. i know my dad smiles … somewhere, out there. and i love you nicholas, being a wonderful person for me. ich liebe dich!

Veris dulcis in tempore, florenti stat sub arbore
Iuliana cum sorore.
Dulcis amor!
Refl. Qui te caret hoc tempore, Fit vilior.

Ecce florescunt arbores, lascive canunt volucres;
inde tepescunt virgines.
Dulcis amor!
Refl. Qui te caret hoc tempore,Fit vilior.

Ecce florescunt lilia,et virginum dant agmina
summo deorum carmina.
Dulcis amor!
Refl. Qui te caret hoc tempore,Fit vilior.

Si tenerem, quam cupio,in nemore sub folio,
oscularer cum gaudio.
Dulcis amor!
Refl. Qui te caret hoc tempore, Fit vilior *

* carmina burana

things to be done in battle

(c) ukirsari

* pampering yourself in the ‘city of 1066’

battle is a small, compact and lively city that can be explored in a day trip. take a nice walk along the historical trail of the city. including pay a visit to st valery sur somme church and its gorgeous cemetery. then small paths will lead you to the flower shops and small church of st francis. otherwise, do trekking to pevensey and rye country walks of 1066 to commemorate battle of hastings.

* battle abbey

half ruins of an abbey that not be used anymore in the reign of king henry viii. here still can be found the novice monks chamber, the main building that facing to the 1066 battle field, surrounded by oak trees and several private school which remains us to … harry potter’s hogwart 🙂

* ye olde king’s head: an old pub at battle

we found this nice pub when we wander around the city of battle in the evening. the door looks very low. a friend of us, assumed it might be caused … long time ago, whilst the pub is busy, they still have to keep an eye for the enemies who try to attack locals whilst riding a horse. with this lowermost door, the riding horses enemies will find it difficult to enter. favorite dish: cider ale and smoked beef sandwiches. address: 37 mount street, battle, east sussex