It is like a general love story one has ever made. Simple, cute, and always happy in the beginning; but mostly terrible in the end. But to make it different, I want to say it through the song lyrics. It surely would have mixed lyric from .
This first one, I would like to write about
My whole world changed from the moment I met you. And it would never be the same.
(I Do – 911)
It was a hot afternoon. I was really hungry, and exhausted. Thinking about my future plans in doing research funded by the Ministry of Higher Education in my campus, my mind gave up to my starving stomach to go to the canteen. That day, I conducted semi-quantitative research in my former high school; so I asked some teachers to help me spreading the questionnaires to their students. In a brief, I did on research about innovative learning and teaching styles using 8 ways of students interests. However, they seemed to be not liking the research activities. Yeah, I understood.
Back to my story. I walked to the canteen. And there he was. I admit that I have written this part of story many times. However this was how everything begins; and I always love to play it over and over again. I ordered a meal, spicy chicken with rice and salad. He ordered a bowl of noodle. Just because I recognized him as the same-year schoolmate and my bestfriend’s friend, I waved to him and requested him to sit with me.
I had not known him in person before, but that time, it was different. He asked me what I was doing there and so did I. From this simple conversation, I knew a fact that he just published one of his campus’ event in my school. He also started to tell me everything, about his study in one of the most expensive private campus in the city. About his riding hobby, about his organization in campus. And I sat there listening to him and replying his stories with mine. Well, it was a fine afternoon and a discussion with such an old friend. (wait, an old friend?) It was just like I met him after a long separation (?). After this, we got back to our campuses.
Not long after that, my lecturer assigned me to do a field research about youth culture. Then, i remembered that he was active as the member of big-bike community. Actually, I had several communities to be researched; K-pop lovers, gamers, football fans, and muslim youth. Yet, I decided to choose his community because I thought an issue related to the big-bike driver was becoming a hot topic on the media. From there, I contacted him starting to discuss about the topic with more intense frequency. I attempted to reduce the gap. I followed him and arranged some meetings with the other members of community. I, of course interviewed him and his friends to acquire the data I sought. He also gave me some videos to understand how the moto-lovers would do anything for their motorcycles (his analogy about his bike is like a hot-and-sexy girl). Yes, this community was so masculine (not to discuss around gender limitation and perspective).
I got so comfortable with these activities, research I meant. And maybe with him too. Because every time I got engaged with his community and the books, and the interviews, and the scripts, I was happy all day. Despite its complicated and messy schedules, I was smiling all day to make the thoughtful and resourceful report. Certainly, in the end, I got an A for the research!
And in the end, it turned out to be an unstoppable temptation.
A great kick start about my research career has begun. Projecting myself as a keen, diligent, and fearless researcher in the future drives me to take further steps to have more research, more presentation, and as a result, more journeys! After all that research on his community, I got a summer camp scholarship in National University of Singapore; it was my first time abroad. I had to present my research in the most prestigious conference on earth, Inter Asia Cultural Studies; where all of my audiences are the professors, PhD and master candidates, and international journalists (you know, even my Dean was there) just because my presentation had the similar topic with Mr. John Roosa and his wife, one of prominent scholars from Canada experts on history and human rights. The next year, I was also invited in a conference in Cambodia and short program in Japan, the country I had been dreaming for six years.
This is why I name this episode with the very first line of 911 song. Because simply when I met him, my whole world really changed.