A week before the day I flew to Bali was my examination’s week. A week full of stress, pressure, and hectic preparation for the exams. A lot of things happened so fast, and at some point they started to messed up–somehow.
I got sick. I got a high fever, a bloated stomach, a numb head, and every possible bad thing that slowed me down. I was unable to get up, and I missed the fourth day of my exam, which was chemistry, P.E, and Bahasa Indonesia. It lasted for several days, until day-1 from my departure to Bali.
1st June in 2016, I went to Soekarno Hatta airport in Cengkareng by Damri, checked in all by myself, and wait for the plane in the waiting room ’til boarding time. Luckily I have just copied Game of Thrones (yes my friend, I do love TV shows) into my tablet so I killed boredom by watching it.
When boarding time came, everyone who helds economy ticket made a line, waiting for their turn to show their boarding pass, and enter the way to the bus that will bring us to the plane. Then, a woman in front of me looked like as if she was looking for someone. When I checked my tablet, Stela Sebastian, another junior finalist was looking for me. She stood in front of me, so I tapped her shoulder, and ask her name, to check whether I have found the right person or not.
So I went in to the plane together with her. Such a relief! A company is always better than going out alone. Not long after, we entered the plane. My seat was in the middle, so I didn’t get the window view.
After around one and a half hour, we arrived at I Gusti Ngurah Rai airport in Denpasar, Bali (though it is actually located in Badung, not Denpasar to be exact). There, two students from Sekolah Tinggi Pariwisata (STP) Nusa Dua Bali, or Nusa Dua Bali Tourism Institute had already waited for us. I also met Ms. prof. Emilienne Baneth-Nouailhetas, attache of the Embassy of France. The three of us then took a ride with a cab and went to STP Nusa Dua Bali.
We stayed at Langon Resort and Spa, a hotel owned by STP Nusa Dua Bali. I shared a room with Stela.
After settled down and unpacked some things, we spent some time by the pool, Stela was reading her college’s books whilst I did nothing but enjoyed the scenery. I mean, how often can I see something so green like that in my town?
I met Kyla Sommers–yes, she was the one who sent me a notification about the video-essay competition–from George Washington University along with her friend. Actually, I really, really can’t remember his name, and all I remember was his nationality, Indian.
Later that night, we had dinner at Pizza Hut in Seminyak (I know, all the way to Bali and we still chose Pizza Hut) after Stela ate two popsicle ice creams from a small ice cream shop. I can’t remember what’s the name of the shop, but it is located before Gusto Gelato from Lippo Square. I felt so nervous about the next day, I didn’t even feel like eating ice cream for a little bit.
When we’re finally went back to the hotel, we asked the receptionist in the lobby the arrivals all of the finalists, and he said almost every participants had arrived already. I felt exhausted, tired, and excited at the same time to heard that news. Then, we went straight to bed to restore our energy before the first day of the conference.
To be continued.