When I 'rented' a private swimming pool

I literally 'rented' a private swimming pool yesterday (19/9).

How did it start? Probably it had to do with intuitions.

The evening before (18/9) a friend came by the house for a short confab. Being a faithful Protestant as she always is, she mentioned that this is the month of Bible-reading for us Christians and among other things, she asked me that out-of-the-blue question, "How often do you open your bible, T?"

What is she, an angel?


I was quite embarrassed to have anyone approach the subject of my own religiosity, particularly because I have not been a very devout person myself over the last several weeks.

So that night I randomly picked excerpts from the Bible and found the story of Moses (which is also found in Judaism's Torah and Islam's Quran) regarding the promised land for the Israelites out of Egypt.

But that's not the main story yet.

On the next day, at around 12:00, I suddenly felt the mood to swim.

It had been quite a while since I last swam, being ill and all; so I found it unique myself that I found the urge to swim.

When I got there and bought the pool ticket for Rp6,000 (0.30 Euros), I found myself at a peculiar surprise.

I was the only one who swam that day!

Really, I spent a lovely hour going back-and-fro in the pool and enjoyed it lavishly as if it belonged to my own disposal. It really felt as if I actually had purchased the swimming pool myself.

Wow, this month of fasting definitely had discouraged a lot of people from swimming, especially in such a sunny day.

Having nobody else in sight (apart from the pool ticketing person keeping an eye at the front desk), I turned on the Music Player in my Nokia loudly (and not with earphones as I usually did), put it on the chaise lounge that I had shifted right to the tip of the pool, and sang a karaoke in a total carelessness.

My mood told me that Buble's "Quando Quando Quando" was the best one to listen to, so I turned it on and quickly continued it to John Mayer's "Why Georgia" and two of Lisa Ono's French songs.


I 'owned' the swimming pool only for an hour though, as I realised I had to go home as not to run late for a Go course I planned to attend in Japan Foundation.

Somehow I had a hunch that I was going to JF not for the Go course.

I went to JF which was located in the Summitmas building (not very far from Ratu Plaza district in South Jakarta) and when I got there, I found myself registering for JLPT application instead.


I previously had my qualms over registering or not registering for this year's level 3 JLPT (because I am not sure whether I would be taking the test in Jakarta or Atlanta), but if I have to take the chances, then that was it.

I bought the application form and I was surprised to find out from the JF staffs when they told me that the registration is closed at 17:00 that day.

I looked at the clock.


Whoa, I panicked!

It took me around 5 minutes to fill in all the details, from my full name, birth details, home address, personal e-mail, etc etc.

So that was it: I had come to JF not to attend a Go course after all, but to register for JLPT!

I guess it had to do with God's workings, for I had no wonder that they were all mapped out from the evening before when I read that Bible.

There may seem little correlation between the two events, but I think it was much more than a coincidence that I came to register for JLPT at 16:00, which was exactly an hour before the registration was closed (and I had to wait for another 365 days were it to happen).

There was a long queue for the JLPT application, ranging from the high-school-attending ones to the office-boys test-takers. During that long queue, I noticed something trivial which I think worth a mention here.

The girl who was queuing right in front of me had the level 3-application form in her hands held in such a way that I was able to read all the details in her form without the slightest indiscretion.

I looked at her 3x4 Pasfoto (photo of passport standard) which was attached on the top left of her form and let out a big ZWT.

It was not a pasfoto; anyone could easily tell that the picture was taken inside a car!

I'm not sure if such a pasfoto could be accepted by the Japanese examiners but why the hell should I care? I don't even know her.

Queuing there alone with nobody else I know, I had nothing better to do than looking around.

I took a more careful look at her pasfoto, she struck a half-formal half-casual pose in that particular picture until I finally said to myself, "Hey, she looks quite cute after all"

She queued right in front of me hence I was unable to see her face from the frontal view (I had not noticed her myself when I first came to the JLPT application room as I was busily preoccupied with filling up stuffs).

I took a look at her date of birth: September 1992.

Hmm so she just had her birthday not so long ago. A high school girl at around the same age as someone else I used to write poems about.

Definitely my type.

Might be worth to pick her up, probably striking a little conversation? It had been a while since I picked up a total stranger out of nowhere.

Her e-mail address was in Yahoo and it sounded catchy enough, I think I could add her if I wanted to.

But nah, I think I'll pass this time, I decided.

In complete contrast to my Singapore days where I could put myself at a full pride for being a student of a top school, I have no particular school/college I could affiliate myself to at this particular moment of time, hence I lost the 'appetite' to introduce myself as an "unemployed student" (yea, as if such a thing exists, eh? Haha.)

I finished the JLPT administration related issues at around 16:55 (yes, just around five minutes before it closed) and thanked God and myself for the luck I had had that day.

Before heading home, I went to the Go course which was already on midway and I thought to myself, Maybe next time.

It would be too late and a bit rude just to bulge into the middle of the lesson, so I looked for something else to preoccupy myself before going home.

And there was this Wali Sanga (the first nine Islamic proselytisers in Java island) picture galleries which showed the atmosphere in and around the Wali Sanga tombs in various Javanese cities.

There were 45 black-and-white pictures altogether taken by Seno Gumira Ajidarma (I think I've heard that name somewhere before, yet I couldn't recall where).

The beauty of the pictures really struck me.

It made me wonders that visitors from all around Java, do their best to flock to the tombs and some of them even spend hours of praying in front of a particular tomb.

There was one picture of a pilgrim who came to Sunan Bonang's tomb in Bawean island and had prayed in front of the tomb for five days when the picture was taken.

As far as I know, Islam discourages any pilgrimages to tombs (even to Prophet Muhammad SAW's own tomb), so I concluded it to myself that it must be the elements of syncretism combined within that made them do a five-days-of-prayer like that; just like when Catholic pilgrims flock to pray in front of saints' tombs (though Catholics never worship saints in the first place).

On my way home, I noticed several Bike-to-Work 'adherents' in the street.

Whoa, cool.

They struck quite a commitment when it came to biking to work, because it sure must be a dangerous ordeal to bike back-and-fro from house to office everyday. Vietnamese people have it easier with their own dedicated bicycle lanes, but Indonesians don't.

I salute those BtWs. I hope God grant them safety always along their Bike-commuting activities...

Taking a look at the river, I also noticed that Jakarta's own Ciliwung river had an iceberg.

Wait a sec, an iceberg????

After a closer look, then it came clear upon me that the white substance I saw floating on the river was in fact an agglomeration of detergent substances.

Yuck. That could turn anyone's appetite off.

Then on the night during my sleep, I dreamt about planning a vice a couple of my ACS buddies in a seaside elite school, where we left our parked motorbikes in exchange for the car we were about to steal there.

In conclusion, I dreamt about stealing a car.

What a weird dream, I've had a couple of them going for the last several weeks... Perhaps anyone could tell me what they're supposed to mean?

Dream of stealing.... Is this an omen of anything, or does it tells me anything about my current inner conscience?

Have I taken anything that actually doesn't belong to me?

This question have had me wondering for myself now, and I really can't tell the answer. I just hope anyone could tell me what that is, because I don't think I have the answer...yet.

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