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What I Write When I Write About Running

No, this post isn’t related to Haruki Murakami’s memoir about marathon, in case you wonder (and no, I haven’t read it). It’s just a bunch of thoughts and nostalgia that has been popping out of my mind while running.

Lately, I’ve been trying to make morning run / jog as a routine, either weekly or even more frequently. It’s not my first time or to be exact about it, it’s always been on my New Year’s resolution; to lose some weight and live a healthier life. I hate to admit that I’m a typical person who feels so excited-almost-exploded about something for the first couples of times (or days or weeks) then simply forgets it. To think about it again, it’s not only about me being inconsistent but also because I’ve always been afraid of running.

It’s not only running I’m afraid of. I’ve always hated sports. If I were a word, I would undoubtedly be the antonym of ‘sporty’. I grew up being haunted by physical subject at school. When I was in elementary school, I was so fat and slow. I wasn’t good at sport or any kind of physical activity (except swimming). I was lame at any kind of sport game and I knew that even my good friends would not choose me for their team. It didn’t matter much because I was good (and sometimes ‘best’) at the rest; science, social subjects, language, art, or dealing with computer. On the other hand, since there was nothing I could equally hate at school, my only nightmare during exam weeks then was running / physical subject exam. It’s natural, isn’t it, to hate something you aren’t good at?

During high school it didn’t get any better. I was around 80 kgs back then and still on the last of the list of sporty subject. However, on the last years of high school I got on tight diet and did much Dance Dance Revolution at home. I got into university as a freshman 25 kgs less and a year from then, I was officially a geology student. Geo-lo-gy, an ‘adventurous’ major requiring great physical works outdoor. Fortunately, I had grown up by that time. I knew that I couldn’t keep away from physical activities so I decided to beat it. I went running with anger, I exercised to revenge, I did hundreds of push ups and sit ups per day, I thought that the best way to hate something was to be brave and overcome it then be fine about it.

After being fine with geology and becoming an office geologist with slightly overweight BMI, I didn’t feel much anymore about running but deep down I knew that I was still uncomfortable with it. I was still afraid of looking slow or lame or just bad. When my husband (my then-fiance) asked me to do more sport and running, I felt depressed. I was angry. Why? Am I too fat? Can’t you accept me the way I am? When everybody started running as a trend, I secretly said, “Oh, you superficial trendy people.”

I didn’t remember exactly when I realized that I actually need to exercise for my own sake, for my own body. I guess when I started doing Monday yoga one or two years ago. It reminded me of how my body always takes care of me, follows my heart and brain, goes near and far out there. I need to take a good care of it in return.

Then this year I decided to start again, to run in peace, by myself, slowly, pushing aside my fear and anger. I’m still trying to erase those bad memories in the past. I bought new pants and jacket with pockets. I installed ‘Running’ application (and don’t worry, I kept it only for myself). I don’t know if I will ever be able to love running but I guess for the time being, it means accepting my own flaw. It means embracing the pain. It means apologizing and forgiving myself at the same time.

And morning runs mean morning view :)

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A Quick Transit in Surabaya (2014)

I just remembered that I haven’t posted pictures I took during a short transit in Surabaya before coming back to Balikpapan from Ubud (29 December 2014). Actually it was my very first time stepping on the second metropolitan city in Indonesia. I only had a couple of hours and a cousin to visit. I crossed the zoo out of my option and of course the malls too, leaving me only a few tourist attractions. Surabaya is not a touristy city but it’s a nice gate for East Java (Malang, Mount Bromo, or Baluran) and other islands on the Eastern Indonesia (yes, to Bali, Lombok, or Komodo). I browsed Wikitravel, Lonely Planet and some other articles. I decided to go to House of Sampoerna, just wander around the town with taxi and eat at Restoran Bu Rudy (which is very famous for the chili a.k.a sambal).

In the morning I landed on Juanda Airport and got picked up by my cousin. She told me that the airport is actually located in Sidoarjo instead of Surabaya. We then directly headed to House of Sampoerna, which was literally on every Surabaya must-visit list. On the way there I looked around and found the town just similar to Jakarta or Bekasi.

House of Sampoerna was cool, neat and very well-maintained. It displayed the cigarette company evolution and history from era to era. There was an interactive digital display about the step by steps of making the cigarette (pretty nice for Indonesian museum). Even it’s got a small portion of real factory you can watch from the 2nd floor (the museum has only 2 floors).

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That Wonderful Feeling

Insta lately!

According to Instagram, it’s been 28 weeks (about 7 months) since my first post at @byputy, since I decided to start drawing again. Based on the folders, there have been more than 60 projects I’ve done, outside daily doodles (not all of them are commercial though). I have to admit that it’s not easy because when you have a full time job, it means full time responsibility. Bold line. No buts. On the other hand, I also have to do my best when I work on the custom illustrations. It might sound little but people order custom illustration mostly for gift for special ones or special occasions so they have to be special. Sometimes it is logo and illustration for small business (online shop or catering). They seem simple but I can’t imagine myself disappointing people with ugly design then dimming their hope.

The thing is that so far I’ve been happy to do everything. After coming back from the office there’s an excitement, “Ah, where’s my brush. Let’s get things done!” I learned a lot and even managed to learn using and getting used to brush. I’ve been making new friends and giving them my best wishes while drawing for them, “Good luck for the wedding,” “Send my hugs for your nephew,” “Hope that the business will be good,” “Ah, happy anniversary!” and other such things. I got reconnected to awesome artists like Nani and Kak Anis! I’ve also been drawing for my close friends, for personal use or shop. It’s wonderful when people, especially the loved ones, say, “Thank you. I love it.” It’s like spreading love and happiness and creating nice things for others.

Daily Dairy Needs booth at Pop Up Market Balikpapan, March 2015.

Last week I got a chance to help decorating Daily Dairy Needs‘ (a homemade online patisserie in Balikpapan) booth in a pop up market. I drew the menu and wrote a quote. I got free yummy cakes as well :9 However, the warmest feeling came when Tiara, the adorable owner thanked me and wrote in Instagram that DDN successfully sold 192 slices of cake, 55 tiramisu, 17 bottles of almond milk, 40 pcs of caramel pudding and creme brulee and 140 boxes of volcano chocolate bites during the event. Ahhh :3

Last but not least, @byputy has got more than 1250 followers by today. So, thank you thank you very much, everyone :)

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“Oh no dear, you’ve fallen in love with her, you idiot.”

‘Ugh, that was horrible. I kicked a lot of furniture and swore constantly and played a lot of aggressive contact sports afterwards. I went to see my sister and in the middle of a tirade of abuse about your moral degeneracy, I said: It’s so messed-up she’s with him. She should be with me. There it was. I didn’t even know I was going to say it.’

 

‘Haha! What did she say?’

 

‘She said, oh no dear, you’ve fallen in love with her, you idiot. I said, no, no, no, absolutely not. I’m simply experiencing level of irrational emotion that makes me want to roll a rock over the door like a Flintstone and imprison her, until she realises she must choose me. I won’t be a cruel jailer, she will get fed and can take supervised baths. My sister said, yeah, that’s love. You?’

Taken from Mhairi McFarlene’s ‘It’s Not Me, It’s You’.

It's not me, it's you.