My body moved slowly to the right and left. Once, I put my hands in my hunter raincoat pockets. Other people hand was hanging on handle, while another focused on the smartphone. Some were reading or enjoying music from earphone while the others were talking.

Pinarsita Juliana

I checked my Accuweather, it was 13° Celsius. Everybody looked comfortable and warm in his or her coat, jacket, and suit.  “Metro station,” said the train operator.

While some people walked out, others came in and I was in a hurry to grab a sit. I looked at the Metro system map photo that I took this morning by my phone; it was still the seventh station. There would be ten stations more to arrive at Wheaton.

The train was continuing the journey. I looked around once again. Different faces but they did the same thing. Then I looked at the window, nothing special outside except the wall and I felt a headache because of the speed.

I stared out someone in front me, naturally, smiled at him but it got awkward. There was a lady sitting beside me, I wanted to greet her but her eyes focused to see some other part or maybe she was thinking about something. She looked empty or maybe tired. I did not dare to ask. I postponed my intention and looked at the window again. I kept my mouth silent. But in my mind, I cursed my self because forgot to bring my earphone.

From Tanleytown-AU to Wheaton, I even did not know why I choose this route. After the photography class this Tuesday, I thought to step aside in somewhere place. It was my two weeks became a fellow at Center for Environmental Filmmaking- American University, Washington DC.

I felt tired to talk, smile, think, and laugh, even to pay attention to something. I just needed my alone time and place where I did not have to interact with anybody. And I said to my self, “it is the time.”

Along the way, an introvert like me, oppositely, was feeling lonely. No friends to talk were even worse than pushed my self-keep talking for this half-day. I missed a friendly atmosphere.

My mind then flew to my memory in Indonesia. I used to smile to other when I wanted to start a conversation with them; even I never knew them before.  Sometimes, I also asked the stranger, “where do you want to go?”

I did not finish yet my flashback memory, but sunlight interrupted my eyes. My pupils opened out. My lips pulled like the crescent moon. From this window glass, I saw the scenery of the city.

I saw houses and buildings were arranged very well into some blocks area. The buildings were not colorful but mostly minimalist and dominated by some colors like charcoal, gray, white, black and dark brown.

The scenery looked homely but simple, especially because the green, red, and yellow colors from trees and plants still existed even in a big city like this. I also could see the symbol of the cross between the other buildings. That symbol was too visible. 

Suddenly, my mood was changing. Some happy songs appeared in my head. It became the back sound while I was enjoying the scenery. It felt like Deja Vu or I just remembered some of the American films that I ever watched before. Whatever! I enjoyed it now.

Oh, that was one of my historic experiences personally. Even it does not sound important at all. But, it has changed the way I think about living abroad.

“You can not bring your home everywhere, but you can make yourself feels homely everywhere.”

After that day, step-by-step and day-by-day, I realised there was nothing wrong with this big city life. It was only me who felt homesick. Instead of being lonely, after I felt very much welcome in that place.

So, now when I remember that day again, I can laugh at my self because how ridiculous I was at that time. It has never been easy for a village girl like me to adapt to city life.  But, through this experience; I mean six weeks abroad, I have learned many things, not only to advance my professional skills but also understand more about my self, as well as relation to other people.

Nb: Thank you for everything guys!!! 🙂

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