Sunday, October 14, 2012

Confessions of a Commitment-phobic

Today I decided to write a rather personal story, without the sugar-coated-sweet words.
So here goes..

Hi my name is Tess, and I'm a commitment-phobic.
I'm not always like this. I grew up watching Disney movies and one thing that I learned is that a girl would never be truly happy until she marries her soul mate. Yeah, pretty fucked-up right?

I was a helpless romantic, too (well, I probably still am. haha). I begin to have crushes on boys since I was in kindergarden (what?), receive my first love letter in elementary school, and have a first 'relationship' in 6th grade. And by relationship I meant 'passing notes in class and no eye contact or conversation ever took place. ever'.

I can't help it, I like boys. ;P

In high school I once thought that I wanted to get married in my early twenties, or as soon as I graduate from university. I was single at that time, but I was certain I will meet somebody and fall in love and settle down. Happily ever after, just like the Disney movies.

And then, two major things happened in my life; my parents decided to get separated, and my first love broke my heart.

Goodbye, fairy tale girl. Hello, trust issues.

After a few years I realize that my parent's 'failure' is something that I can learn from, not something that I should be afraid of. It's just one simple story, and it doesn't mean mine would have the same ending.

As for my broken heart, it took some time, but I eventually mend it. Thanks to Ramadhan month, crazy-fun friends, supportive family, ice creams, singing jobs, good grades, and of course, some other new guys.

Dating other people definitely helped me get over him. I went out to dinner/lunch dates with a bunch of guys shortly after the break up (okay, I'm exaggerating, it was only 5 guys... in one month). My point is, getting asked out on dates kinda boost my confidence. It shows me that I can get any guy I want, that I deserve to be treated well, and that there are so many genuinely nice guys out there. And that he's an idiot to cheat on me. ;)

But yeah.. Even after all that I still have a big chunk of commitment-phobia inside of me. Those are just two of the main reasons. In reality, my mind is so much more complicated than that.

I keep wondering why women magazines always have those "How To Get Your Guy To Settle Down" but never "How To Convince Yourself That Marriage Is Not Scary". 

Maybe because society thinks that all girls are "commitment-crazy". Well na-ah, not me.

Until next time.


Monday, October 8, 2012

First World Problems

This is like, one of the funniest videos I've ever seen! :D


Saturday, September 29, 2012

Five Hundred Days

As I've mentioned before, (500) Days of Summer is one of my favorite movies of all time.

I like the idea of an honest non-fairy-tale could-happen-to-you relationship story. Because that's life, and just because a relationship ended doesn't mean that it wasn't based on love. It just wasn't meant to be.

I think everyone has a "Summer" in their lives. Someone you have to get over with before you finally meet the right one; your "Autumn". Just like, you know, a "Robin" before you meet "The Mother" ;)

AJ Rafael - Five Hundred Days

On another note, I stumbled upon this video and as a die hard 500 days fan, I absolutely love it. I hope you do too. ;)


Thursday, September 27, 2012

1.49 AM

They say nothing good happens after 2 AM right?
Well I still got 11 minutes left ;P

For the past many years I've been waking up at these kind of hours, between midnight and 2 AM.
On some nights I woke up in a hospital, during my night shift, with the sound of the still-hectic Emergency Room.
On some nights I woke up and hear the sound of my housemates cramming for exams together at the dining room.
On some nights I wasn't even asleep yet, and I'm surrounded with friends offering more drinks.

And on some nights, I woke up alone in my bed, feeling somewhat lonely.

Well yeah, I hate to admit it but I do feel lonely too, at certain times. To me, loneliness is kind of funny. It's the kind of feeling that I very rarely get, since I am always surrounded by family, co-workers, friends and/or boyfriend during the day and the evening. Plus, I'm the kind of girl who enjoy solitude a little bit too much, meaning I secretly love being alone.

But not when I woke up at night like this..
I feel like I'm the only one who's awake and everybody has left me to travel to lalaland. (Which doesn't make sense because I know that the people in the US are probably having lunch right now, but my heart simply refuse to acknowledge that)

I guess people would recommend me to check the social media during these hours, because Internet is a 24 hour thing. Well yea, it helps. But to me hearing a friend's voice and reading their "I can't sleep" status are just not the same.

The only positive thing I get from this is that maybe that's why God invented sholat malam. The night prayer. To remind us that at the end of the day, we really are alone, and He's the only one you can count on.
But hey, that's just me.

Sleep tight, world.


Thursday, September 13, 2012

United States of Awesomeness, Part 2 : Basics of Boston

So this is part 2 of tips and trick tentang traveling to US. Again, I'm not an expert, but I do hope some of my experiences would help. :)


I stayed in Boston for 5 weeks, it was in spring-summer time, which the locals often told me as 'the perfect time to visit Boston'. Kotanya enak untuk jalan kaki dan santai-santai di taman. A great place for people who enjoy architecture, museums and seafood. Dan yang penting: rute kereta listrik dan bus di Boston gampang dihafal. 

Tips 1 : Begitu mendarat di bandara, gw langsung beli Charlie Ticket. Ini 'kartu sakti' untuk naik bus dan kereta selama di Massachusetts state. Ada yang berlaku 1-day, 7-days, 1-month, etc.  Karena harga 1-month pass lebih murah dibanding beli 7-days empat kali, gw recommend untuk sekalian beli yang expired nya lama. Yang 7-days harganya sekitar $18.

Tips 2 : Kalo udah beli Charlie Ticket, dari bandara kamu bisa langsung naik kereta/bus ke tempat nginep. Dodolnya gw adalah terlalu cape dan malas, jadi malah naik taksi ke apartemen. Taksi di Boston : tidak bisa diandalkan. Jauh lebih mahal dan kalo pesen via telepon, bisa ga dateng2 ampe 3 jam. Trust me.

Tips 3 : Google Maps is going to be you're best friend. :) Karena itu, belilah sim card untuk di iPad or any other gadgets that you have. Gw pake T-mobile di Blackberry dan AT&T di iPad. AT&T sinyalnya lebih oke. Harganya sekitar $50 untuk sim card perdana.

Tips 4 : Ada yang namanya Prepaid Credit Card alias kartu kredit isi ulang. Waktu mau daftar paket AT&T untuk iPad, ternyata bayarnya harus pake credit card. Gw ga punya, jadi gw pinjem nyokap. Ternyata kartu kredit Indonesia ngga dianggep, jadi ngga bisa dipake (kasian ya kite). Jadilah gw beli si Green Dot Prepaid Visa, biasanya ada di supermarket-supermarket,  misalnya Stop & Shop.

Tips 5 : Selama di sana gw sering beli barang online, dan beberapa kali kartu kredit Indonesia ga dianggep dan ditolak. This is where the Prepaid Credit Card should come in handy. ;) Sayangnya, karena ngga punya green card, prepaid credit card ini ngga bener-bener 'isi ulang'; kalo isinya abis, kita harus beli yang baru lagi, ga bisa perpanjang. Tapi lumayan lah buat shopping2 lucu. ;)

Tips 6 : What else? Ah yes, the weather. Boston ini agak bipolar, hari ini terang benderang, besoknya hujan badai. Sering-seringlah liat weather forecast untuk besok. If you're gonna travel in spring-summer time too, tetep jangan lupa bawa jaket dan payung. Selama gw di sana rata-rata udaranya 10-19 derajat Celcius lah. Lumayan dingin untuk orang Indonesia.

I think those are the basics of surviving in Boston. Feel free to add your tips at the comment section. Have a great day!

Part 3 coming soon! :)


United States of Awesomeness : Visa Amerika

Okay, ini harusnya di-post sebelum United States of Awesomeness Part 1 yah, cuman gw baru inget. Haha ya maap. :)

One of my good friends, Willy, sempet nanya tentang bikin visa. Ngga berapa lama, temen gw Ratna juga nanya hal yang sama. Visa Amerika emang terkenal susah dapetnya. Tapi prinsipnya kalo alesannya jelas, insya Allah lancar kok. :)

Jadi, ini pengalaman gw bikin visa di US embassy..

Tips 1: Datanglah tepat waktu. Gw dateng 1 jam sebelum jadwal gw, itu aja udah ngantri. 
Gw ngantri 5 menitan, trus absen. Siapin paspor. Ditanya "Jadwal yang jam berapa?" "Jam 8." Trus petugasnya akan nyari nama lo di list.

Next. Security check.
Tips 2: Pakai baju rapi... dan ngga usah pake high heels. Gw pake high heels Charles & Keith setinggi 12 senti waktu itu, begitu lewat X ray bunyi, jadi harus dicopot. Pas dicopot ga bunyi. Ya ga kenapa2 juga sih, cuman jadi rempong aja kan :D

Next. Semacam loket pengecekan berkas gitu. Di sana ditanya "Pernah ganti nama ngga? Pernah ganti paspor?" "Ngga."
Abis itu dikasih nomor urut, trus nunggu lagi.

Tips 3: Nunggunya lama, paling enak kalo bareng temen/sodara jadi sambil ngobrol. Oyah, di dalem ada yang jual makanan jadi lumayan lah bisa cemil-cemil.

Setelah nunggu sekitar 1 jam, nomer gw dipanggil. Masuk ke ruangan.

Yak, next. Loket sidik jari. Dengerin aja instruksi petugasnya. Left thumb - Left fingers - Right thumb - Right fingers. Done.

Lanjut: nunggu lagi. Udah terakhir nih, tinggal wawancara.

Wawancara pun bentuknya loket gitu. Jadi kita bisa denger orang lain ditanya apa aja, di-approve atau ngga, dll.

When it's our turn, nyokap gw ditanya duluan. Kita ditanya sama petugas bule laki-laki.

Q: What's your name?
M: (she told him her full name)
Q: Who are you traveling with?
M: (nyokap nunjuk gw, adek gw, dan tante gw) my children and my sister.

Q: Reason for traveling to US?
M: Medical reasons. I have a heart condition. I'm going to have an operation in Boston Children's Hospital.
Q: What kind of heart condition?
M: (untung nyokap gw pinter, dia jelasinlah tentang Pulmonary Regurgitation, plus riwayat Tetralogy Fallot dst..)
Q: Do you have any letters from your doctor?
-------> Kita komunikasi sama dokter di Boston itu lewat e-mail, dan dodolnya, e-mailnya lupa diprint!
TIPS PALING PENTING: Jangan ada dokumen yang ketinggalan.
But luckily nyokap gw pinter ngomong, dan pede berat. Jadi emang meyakinkan sih.
"..We communicate via emails, but I don't have them with me..."

Q: Okay, okay.. What's the name of your doctor in Boston?
M: (told him the doctor's name)
Q: (ngecek-ngecek di komputernya) Okay. Do you have any insurance? (intinya doi nanya siapa yang biayain perjalanan kita)
M: (mulailah nyokap ngeluarin berkas2 tiket, rekening koran, dll yang menjamin bahwa kita financially mampu pulang balik US) Again, jangan ada dokumen yang ketinggalan.
Q: Where are you going to stay in Boston?
M: (told him the address of our appartment)

Tips 5 : Katanya siiih.. Kalopun punya, jangan bilang kalo punya keluarga di sana. #randomtipsifoundontheinternet :P

Q: Okay, Ma'am, your visa has been approved, but when you get to the immigration at New York, you have to show the person there the printed-out emails, or else you can't enter USA.
M: Okay, thank you.

Giliran gw. 
Q: What's your name?
T: (I told him my full name)
Q: How old are you?
T: I'm 24.
Q: Do you have any job?
T: Yes, I'm a medical doctor.

Tips 6: Katanya lagi nih, jangan sekali-kali bilang "saya pengangguran". Bilang udah kerja juga, pasti harus nyertain buktinya. Karena gw dokter, gw sertain ijazah dan Surat Tanda Registrasi.

Q: Where do you work?
T: (I told him the place where I work)
Q: How long have you been working there?
T: Since I graduated, which is--
Q: When did you graduate?
T: ..last year, in September.
Q: Are you married?
T: No

Giliran adek gw.
Q: What's your name?
A: (nyebutin nama lengkapnya)
Q: How old are you?
A: I'm 17
----->  di sini muka petugasnya kaget, trus bolak balik ngeliatin: adek gw, gw, sama paspor kita. Secara gw jauh lebih pendek dan lebih imut dari adek gw kali yah :D

Q: Are you still in school?
A: Yes, I'm in high school.
Q: (ngomong ke nyokap gw) Because he's a minor, I'm gonna need your.. (gw lupa dia nyebutnya apa, pokonya doi minta kartu keluarga)
A: (adek gw ngasih liat kartu keluarga asli)
Q: (doi ngecek-ngecek bentar) Okay, you're good to go.

Giliran tante gw
Q: (setelah pertanyaan standar nama, umur, pekerjaan) Have you ever been to US?
A: Yes, I went to US several times already.
Q: What for?
A: (trus tante gw ini cerita bahwa dia dulu keja di perusahaan Amerika, dan sering bolak balik untuk rapat di St.Louis, dll...)
Q: (manggut-manggut) Okay.
     (ngomong ke kita ber-empat) Guys, your visa has been approved.

"Thank you..! Thank you so much!"



United States of Awesomeness, Part 1 : Departing

One of my friends, Dian, is planning a holiday trip to the US and recently asked me for some tips and tricks, because I went there last summer. I'm not a traveling expert or anything (usually I can't even pack properly. haha),  but I thought I'd share a few of my experiences with you guys.

Gw naik Singapore Airlines : Jakarta - Singapura - Frankfurt - New York. Total perjalanan sekitar 24 jam. Dari New York ganti penerbangan with a local airline called Jet Blue, nunggu sekitar 1,5 jam trus lanjut New York - Boston.

Tips 1 : Kalo mau save some money, biasanya rute Jakarta - San Fransisco lebih murah daripada Jakarta - New York. 

Tips 2 :  Singapore Airlines kursinya nyaman, ada tv di tiap kursi & makanannya enak dan variatif (they serve meals for like, every 2 hours.. and free flow wine). Kemaren gw pake Singapore Airlines karna nyokap gw sakit, dan mereka nyediain supplementary oxygen in case of emergency.

Tips 3 : Untuk penerbangan lokal antar kota, lebih murah kalo beli langsung disana by the time you get there. Jet Blue ini pesawatnya kecil sih, tapi enak, murah.

Tips 4 : Yang mesti diinget, penerbangan lokal biasanya harga tiket cuma include 1 bagasi. Jadi kalo bawa koper >1, ada additional fee. Untuk Jet Blue per koper $40.

Tips 5 : Orang Amerika strict banget soal Security Check. Parno kali ye. :P Don't forget to remove your jacket, hats, scarfs, jam tangan, shoes (pakailah sepatu yang gampang dicopot). Laptop atau tablet dikeluarin dan ditaro di atas tas pas x ray. Dilarang bawa benda cair > 100 ml ke dalem kabin. Semua benda cair dimasukin ke plastik ber-seal, kayak gini nih. Kalo ngga, bakal dibuang dengan kejamnya.

Tips 6 : Katanyaa siiih.. petugas imigrasi di sana galak-galak, tapi gw kemaren dapet yang baik kok, friendly banget malah, mungkin karna kasian nyokap gw lagi sakit yah. Orang sebelah gw ada yang dijutekin karna ngisi arrival form sama customs form nya ngga bener. Oh ya, pas mendarat di JFK, dilarang foto-foto sebelum lewat dari imigrasi. I dunno why tapi ada tanda nya.

Tips 7 : Trolly di bandara ngga gratis, bayar $5.  Siapin uang kecil kalo mau. Karena pas berangkat bawaan gw ringan, jadi gw sih narik koper sendiri aja. 

Kayanya itu dulu tips tentang departing for USA. See you in Part 2!  :)


Wednesday, September 12, 2012


Sara Bareilles 's Gravity is a perfect song to daydream to.

It got me thinking, what is the center of your gravity? You know, what is that one thing that pulls you in, that you think about every other hour? What's that one thing that you keep drowning yourself into? One thing that takes most of you're time, even more than you're supposed to?
Is it Twitter? Path? Other social media? Is it your boyfriend/girlfriend? Money? Work? Your hobby?

Mine would be... the Internet in general. Haha.

Would I change it? Yes. 
If you can change "your center of gravity" to something else, what would it be?

To be honest I started this blog entry thinking about
"I pray, that You, God, would always be the center of my gravity."
But who am I kidding? I spent more time on the Internet than on the praying mat. :P 
So yeah, I am currently trying to change that habit, changing "my center of gravity". 

How about you? :)



Growing up, I used to have this hatred towards labels. I'm not comfortable when people referred to me as "Tessa pacarnya si X" "Tessa 78" "Tessa PSM" "Tessa FK" or the worst kind : "Tessa sepupunya..". Deep inside I wanted people to recognize me as Tessa Anindya. Or Tessa Sastrowardoyo. Titik. When people put labels on me, I feel like I'm forced to be attached to something. And if you know me well enough, you'll know that Freedom and Independence are two of my favorite things in life.

That's probably one of the reasons why marriage is not something I 'adore'. The thought of people referred to me as "Mrs. (insert the lucky guy's name here)" feels very... unusual, to me.

Maybe I'm wrong, maybe it's just my absurd way of thinking.

Either way, I hope you have a great day.
Thanks for reading.


Monday, August 27, 2012

Love and Infatuation

The following is not my writing.
My Dad send it to me a few years ago, it was written by his friend (whom I've forgotten the name, I'll update this later)
I think it's just too beautiful and true so I had to post it here. Enjoy :)

Love & Infatuation

Infatuation is instant desire. It is one set of glands calling to another. Love is friendship that has caught fire. It takes root and grows one day at a time.

Infatuation is marked by a feeling of insecurity. You are excited and eager, but genuinely unhappy. There are nagging doubts, unanswered questions, little bits and pieces about your beloved that you would just as soon not examine too closely. They might spoil the dream.

Love is quiet understanding and the mature acceptance of imperfection. It is real. It gives strength and grows beyond you to bolster your beloved. You are warmed by his presence, even when he is away. Miles do not separate you. You want him nearer. But near or far, you know he is yours and you can wait.

Infatuation says, " we must get married right way. I can't risk losing him."

Love says, " Be patient. Don’t panic. He is yours. Plan your future with confidence."

Infatuation has an element of sexual excitement. If you are honest, you will admit it is difficult to be in one another's company unless you are sure it will end in intimacy. Love is the maturation of friendship. You must be friends before you can be lovers.

Infatuation lacks confidence. When he's away, you wonder if he's cheating. Sometimes you even check.

Love means trust. You can be calm, secure and unthreatened. He feels that trust, and it makes him even more trustworthy.

Infatuation might lead you to do things you'll regret later, but love never will.

Love is an upper. It makes you look up. It makes you think up. It makes you a better person than you were before.