I vividly remember the view from the plane’s window above India. I remember the mixtures of blue, green, dark blue, orange, and yellow of the rising sun. I remember the remnants of the night city lights below, like a trail of fire amidst the pitch black ground. I remember the overcrowded plane filled with migrant workers. Filled with my most wonderful 17 loyal companion for the last two weeks.

If a word could describe my most joyous trip for the last two weeks, it would be surreal.

Like a rising sun, the trip brought bright vision to me. My daily routines have been so dull that the only thing I have been looking up to was only going to HNMUN. Unlike what I used to have back in my younger years, I have no vision of my future. Lately, it has been vague and blurry. I am like a coin-operated robot, programmed to do millions of little things. Like what Morrie said in Mitch Albom’s Tuesdays with Morrie, I just do kazillions of little things just to keep on going. The trip has been so insightful that I know what I am going to do next. For a short term, honestly, I have no idea what it holds for me. But for a longer term, I guess I found my truest passion and how I can relate them to my current study. Like sunrise, it has unveiled a new day – a new idea for my future life.

Like a bright ray of the rising sun, warming the cold, frostbited hands in the middle of a winter day, the trip brought me the warmth of friendship. Cheesy as it sounds, but truest as it is. I have been literally living day and night with 17 amazing people. I would not say they are perfect human beings and so on and so forth, but we don’t need a perfect figure to be our perfect companion, do we? And that is exactly what I have. A perfect mixture! Ha! I have Tante Merry, Mamia, Papi Faris, Ezra Priya S.T. (minus kompre), most loyal slave Gichie, ce Reinhardt, ce Safira, oboh Sitin, Butanegara, Sun Tzu, Kokoh Louis, Koh Giarto, Mugabe, Mahmadani, Bos Aya, the offensive Vicario, and Adek Upit. A mixture of the loudest, hobo-est, ekonomi mapan-est, most offensive, garing-est, and so many other -est to come. We might have little (or was it major?) fights, but all that would be a perfect fit for the big puzzle we’ll miss in the days to come.

Like a sunrise, unveiling a new day, a new adventure, a new mystery, the trip brought me new experiences. I met countless of new friends in the conference, coming from various countries, various background, various languages, and various culture. I saw countless different people along the way, from the upscale uptown girls of Manhattan, the hobos of New York, the bright-looking students of Harvard, the busy men and women of DC, and of course, the cute kids that made me feel as if I am a pedophile! I went to many new places, places that I could only see on the telly or the screen all these days. The bright lights of Times Square, the busy corridors of the NY Subway, the yellow cabs of NY, the astounding landmarks in DC, the majestic Washington Monument and Lincoln Memorial, and the homey and comfortable Boston. I have given the experience to present myself in an international-scale conference, in front of hundreds of international students. The experience of casually chit-chatting with friends from around the world, of hitting the dancefloor with them, of killing-my-feet-off with using heels all day long for two whole days! Gah! Using heels for a trip around New York turns out to be a bad idea. The experience of calling a cab in NY (which is actually rather hard!), of having a self checkout counter in CVS (heheh), of having a good bargain on stalls in the streets of NYC, of closely being tricked by a Latin man in the streets of NY (and actually being tricked by an Afro-American man in the subway), of catching up buses amidst the busy-ness of PABT station Subway in NY, of explaining and discussing matters in the UN HQ, of seeing my dream job in Smithsonian and Capitol Building and KJRI and KBRI, and so many other countless experiences I wish to have many more in my upcoming days.

Like the significant event of sunrise, I could say this trip has been a turning point of my life. The only difference is that sunrise happened every day, but this trip could just be a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

The sun rises and sets. This trip has come to an end. But let the stories and thoughts linger and never set.

We found love in the coldest place.

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