I was born in 1993. When I was only 4 years old, Indonesia and the region faced what was probably their financially lowest point in decades. Prices rose up to the extent people couldn’t afford. People got upset, mad, and decided to overthrow the then president (which later resigning before getting more trouble). Riot, tension, and uncertainty were the circumstances in which I grew up. My mum told me, I was very fortunate that my family could still afford to enroll me to primary school and pay all the tuition for me and my sister.
My batch in primary school was actually the batch with the smallest number of students. The other batches were separated into two classes while there were probably too few students in our batch to only form a class. Not many family could or would spare some money to get their kids to school in those days. So, considering the number of students in my class, it’s like studying in a decent private school.
I am now a full-time university student. Out of all aged 19-24 population in the country, only 18.4% can afford this privilege of pursuing education to a higher degree. 4.8 millions learns in class while twenty-ish millions of the youth learns in real life/work. And what about the high school? The primary school? The education that I am getting right now is probably too grandiose of a daydream for the majority.
I’ve got my education. A very-expensive and unaffordable education for some, ample opportunity combined with knowledge and experience to make the most out of one’s life.
I am not going into statistics anymore. I happen to meet a few of people who yell it right in front of my face but I’m probably have been blinded and deafened by my own indifference.
Yes, those scores of kids I see on my way to campus, yelling, and I do hear, but forget so easily. Some are wearing school uniforms. Some are wearing over-sized-used-tees instead. Some are carrying school bags. Some are carrying a ukulele or a bottle full of rice shaker or a sack full of plastic garbage. Some are working their arses off for a plate of not-so-decent foods. Some are slacking and get pricy junk foods.
Life is _______. (Fill in the blank in your mind or whisper it or just say it out loud if you’re that sure of the answer, please). Was it,
Wonderful? Unfair? A boxing match in which we have to fight, round after round?
A chess match in which we have to think through all the possibilities and its aftermaths? I don’t have any idea of what life is (you’ve got to ask Nietzsche for that one).
Yet, I know a thing about how to live one. I live gratefully. And
just watched a profoundly-moving Louie Schwartzberg’s TEDx Talk in San Francisco that underlies pretty much the same idea.
Here’s to you.
I believe in education and gratitude. I can’t imagine my life without these two. I’d really like to think that those are my raison d’être. It’s a great cause anyway. Look at my mum and uncles. Education gets them out of a tranquil, no electricity jungle of Sumatera to concrete jungle in the states. Gratitude gets the humble-nature to stay.
Oh you could say it’s a fail attempt and didn’t give you clear, coherent elucidation on what the title substantially declare. Well ask Nietzsche now, go!
I’M NOT GOOD AT THIS LET’S GO BACK TO PROGRAMMING (NOT GOOD AT IT EITHER *sigh*).