First thing first, though: I cannot be more grateful of my choice to be back to journalism last year, because this year it brought me the opportunity of first-time out of town and overseas reporting assignment.
The former, a trip to Wonogiri, Central Java, was arranged for a piece about a village called Kepuhsari, and how the people are striving to keep the tradition of shadow puppetry (wayang kulit) alive. After it was published, I submitted the article to a wayang-themed writing competition, and I ended up getting my very first award as a magazine journalist as well as being the only female winner.
To follow that is my first ever work trip abroad, conducted less than a month ago. I went to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, which a friend of mine described as, “Visiting your neighbour’s house across the street”, to cover the finale of a reality show titled Fit for Fashion. It was quite glitzy and glamorous, with my staying in a five-star historical hotel called Majestic that lives up to its name, and the chance of meeting Jimmy Choo.
It has been an interesting ride, career-wise and all, and I am looking forward for more to come. On another note, I cannot help but contemplating the journey so far.
I remember starting this year feeling hopeful, especially after I interviewed a feng shui master as the Year of the Horse was coming, and he said that good fortune was coming up my way. Being an avid reader of the magazine’s horoscope page, I come to the conclusion that although it is interesting to take a peek into what the future holds, my fate is neither set on stone or written in the stars. It is up to me to make my choices and decisions, and I choose the path that makes the most of what I have and enables me to be the best I can.
A first time is a curious thing. As a first-timer, it is natural to be inexperienced; no matter how much one is expected to be, because of their age or whatnot. Unsurprisingly, one’s age does not necessarily correspond to being well-exposed to the mysteries of the world and knowing how to deal with them. I once had the thought that every day is, in a way or another, is a first day all over again, because to some extent it gives one a(nother) chance to start over.
As the year is ending, I look back and am feeling pretty content. I am not saying that I am completely over the turbulence called quarter-life crisis, but I now have a private health insurance card in my wallet and no credit card, so I suppose that is a start. No matter how much I like surprises, I can be terrible at handling stuff that started as something unexpected. Thus, when it comes to accidents and emergencies, I would like to have a safety net prepared. Remember when Julia Robert showed Richard Gere an array of condoms in Pretty Woman and said, “I’m a safety girl.”? It is something like that.
|Photo taken from here.|