What answer would you give if your boss suddenly asks,”you should go to Thailand for business trip. Is it ok?”
If the question above drops to me, I probably will say yes without hesitation. Well, but how if your boss just asks you to go on business trip on couple days prior Eid Fitr? This means that you’ll celebrate Lebaran far away from your family. What would be your answer? Yes or No?
Syahr-i Ramadhan is the holy month for moslem around the world. The month where the 1st time Holy Qur'an revealed to Prophet Muhammad. It's also the time where Allah double the reward for all those who do good deed or worship. So, people are racing to increase prayer, recitation of the Qur’an, doing more charity, and so on.
As in Indonesia, which is said as the biggest moslem population in the world, so many tradition to celebrate Ramadhan and Eid Fitr. When I was a little child, some young guys walked around the village to wake up villagers for pre-dawn meal before fasting which is called “sahur”. They made some loud music with traditional instrument such as “Gendang” or “Bedug”. But, in the city is more quite than the village. For me, visiting home town during this month will bring back the nice memory of my childhood. I love this kind of tradition.
But then one day, my boss asked me to go to Thailand as an observer for audit. Well, I was little bit confused. My feeling was mixed, between exciting and sad. It would be the 1st time for me to go abroad, and also the 1st time I flew by a plane. Hey! Are you kidding? The 1st time taking a plane? Yes! For me, it was the 1st time! So, could you imagine how exciting I was?
In the middle of my excitement, suddenly I felt so sad, since I had to leave my two little daughters and I couldn’t back to my hometown for Lebaran.
Then my husband, my mom and my father encouraged me to go. “Just go, don’t hesitate. We’ll take care of the childs,” said my mom on the line. My parent lives in different city, but for the sake of their daughter, they traveled around 10 hours to my place since the traffic was so damn badly. I love you Mom, Dad. Thank you for loving me so much.
So, here I was on the plane, ready to go abroad. You know? I was so scare being there, on the big steel bird! The voice of jet machine was really terrifying. My boss said, “daijyoubu Ina san. Anshin shite kudasai,” which means it’s ok, don’t worry, please relax, such kind of those words. Kampungan? Yes, I was!!! Hahaha. Didn’t know how to go to toilet on the plane, didn’t know how to use the earphone and the LCD screen in front of my seat, and so on.
But then I enjoyed the flight and we arrived safely in Bangkok, the capital city of Thailand. For me it looks like Jakarta. But the highways are so wide and at that time Thailand already used a smart card for toll road, no queuing on the gate. The weather is quite the same with Jakarta. So, I felt home, no culture shock.
Walking down the street near the hotel, I found a lot food stalls, souvenir shop, shopping mall, even sellers who only used plastic cover to display their things along the street. It was interesting to observe life there. Before I realized something. What was that?
I was the only one who wearing hijab!! I stared around the street, no women wore hijab at all here. I felt a little bit awkward. I felt, people looked at me, strangely.
“Assalamu’alaikum,” a little voice stroke my ears. I turned around, and there was a little girl with her mommy. She wave her hand, her little face was white with slanted eyes. I looked at her mother, she smiled at me, her hair was swaying in the wind. I was speechless. They already walked away before I said simple world hello.
Well, it really became unforgettable Ramadhan for me.
Word Count 699 (including title)