Geraldo and Siquito: Message from the Earth

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Geraldo a young 25 years old angel was looking at the Earth-Time-Counter screen when Chiquito another 24 years old angel came to him.
‘Counting time again heh?… Why do you love to spend your time with that stuff? Come with me. Let’s go explore some other place in this Universe of Heaven.’ Chiquito said looked at Geraldo impatiently.
‘Today is 31st October in Earth Siquito…’ Geraldo replied.
‘Yes… and tomorrow will be 1 of November. I know how that Earth-Time-Counter works. So… what?’ Siquito asked.
‘You know what. We both always receive the message from the Earth on 1 November Siquito.’
‘Yeah…we always do. And what should we do with that?’
‘Do you remember what our Great Teacher said in our Life-on-Earth class?’
‘Which one?’
‘That the message we receive from earth is prayers from everyone who lives there as the human being.’
‘Ah… that one. yes..I remember now. What is the matter with that?’
‘I am wondering with the family who sent the message to both of us. I often heard the woman called my name, your name and then she will cry alone. Usually, it is in the early morning or midnight of their earth time. Sometimes I can hear her husband speak a lot of things with me in his loneliness as if I am there with him. Don’t you want to know why they become so?’
‘Hmmmm… perhaps in the past we also took part in their life?’
‘That can be possible. The Great Teacher said the prayers from the earth are the message that reconnects people on earth and angels in heaven. All angels are once sent to earth to live as the human being before return to this Heaven as an angel again.’
‘Maybe we can go the Library to find out our life as human being in the ‘Book of Earth People’?’
‘Yeah… that’s good thing to do. Come on.’
Then, Geraldo and Siquito went to the Library to find out the Book of Earth People. It took them quite long to find out their names as the human on earth as there are millions of similar names. Siquito almost gives up with the searching but then Geraldo came up with the idea to find out about the family who sent the prayer message. It is easy for them to find out about every human being on Earth as they have access to see it like accessing an atlas of the world.
Meanwhile, in Earth, a woman was crying silently inside her zinc house. Tomorrow will be 1 November. The day she believes to be The Day of All Angels as what she had learned from the Sunday mass preach. She believes that tomorrow, her late two sons’ will be visiting her in the form of an angel. She wonders how would they look like now if they are still alive. They may have been a well built and handsome young boy. They would be tall, with black hair and sharp eyes and has thick eyebrow like Bollywood stars. She can imagine if they are with her now, she would cook their favorite food, asking them to help her in her kiosk and their father’s kiosk at the market. She would ask them to fix every broken thing in the house. She would ask them to advise their little brother on how to be a well-mannered man. She would see them studying in the university in Dili or one of them may have got a scholarship and study abroad or just studying in Indonesia and the school fee would be paid by their elder sister who is now residing in Dili. Oh… how she miss hearing their manly chatters in the house.
The imagination of them made her think about the past years where they were born as little babies. Things were difficult as food is scarce and money is a luxurious thing during the difficult years of the 80s. She and her family were just returned from their village located near Matebian mountain and surrendered to the Indonesian government. Her husband had to leave her to find a job in another city leaving her with the little daughter and her family to sustain themselves with little money he left. Days kept going and the money left is about to go. She had to find a job to sustain her household. She works in rice-field and got a little share of rice for her family and to sustain her second pregnancy. She had a baby boy, her first baby boy and he is adorably cute. She felt happy though life was still difficult for her. She continues to work in the rice-field and had her relatives looked after the baby. But on the eight-month, the baby passed away after had a high fever. She felt a deep sadness for the lost. Her husband returned from the other city and he too felt sorry for the lost. He wished he could be always there with her wife.
Starting new page of her life after the loss, one day she found out that she was pregnant again. She was so happy and she tried not work too hard. She had another baby boy, the second baby boy. She believed the baby was the reincarnation of her first baby. This time she dedicated all her time to be with the baby though she had to try to live frugally with little money which sometimes not enough to buy a bag of rice. Her husband then came and brought her to move to the other city where he lives. The baby grew healthily. But one day, at his tenth month, the baby has a high fever and has to stay during a week in the hospital for treatment. She felt a huge fear haunting her again. Deep in her heart, she asked the God to not take away her baby. But life had another response to her request. The hospital tried to refer her baby to a bigger hospital in another city that took two hours trip. On the way, the baby passed away. She lost her baby again.
It’s been a while when she sat at the back of the shelf and crying but then she quickly has to stop when somebody calling said ‘Kiosk’, a code word means to buy something. It’s a customer. She then rubbed her teary eyes with the handkerchief before she met the customer. There, two young boys with age around 25 and 24 years old stand there looked at her silently for a moment.
‘Yes.. .what do you want to buy?’ She asked them.
‘Two coca cola and a pack of biscuit.’ One of them said. The woman picked the mentioned stuff and handed to them. They both sit on the verandah in front of her kiosk* and eat. It was a hot midday. She stands from the window of the kiosk and looked at them. She felt as if her two late sons are still alive, they may age like these two boys. She saw how they eat the biscuit. She could feel that they were hungry. Without knowing why she felt pity for them.
She then went into the house. She came back with two plates of rice with stir-fried vegetables and fried chicken. The two boys still sat there. She called to the two boys, offered the meal and hand over the plates to each of them, asking them to sit there and eat. The two boys felt shy and rejected the offer at first but the woman kept insisting and then they accepted it. She smiled when she saw how they eat the food wholeheartedly. She felt as if her two late sons are there with her at the moment. She then went back to continue baking the bread to sell. After a while, the two boys finished eating and they handed back the plates. They say thank you to the woman. They stand there in the window of her kiosk just to look at her made the dough for the bread. They observed how she made a phone call to somebody from distance that she called with a lovely name. The woman is talking about how she missed her two late baby boys and how they would look like if they still alive.
After the lady finished her phone call, the two boys called to her to excuse themselves and say farewell to the woman. The woman says goodbye to them. But before they left, the boy who is a bit elder tell her:
’Please do not be sad mom…. We both are always watching you from the heaven…’
The woman freeze for a while. She felt her world is stopped. She felt blank. She tried to call them back but they had disappeared. She did not know what to do next. She wanted to cry and laugh at the same time. In her euphoria, she took a box of candles and light the candles in the Oratorio and started to pray for her two angels son.
Dedicated to Two Brothers in Heaven VZ
*Kiosk = small grocery shop
**Oratorio = a miniature praying house
VZ, Dili, 31 Oct 2017
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Cloud and the Blue Sky

What if the sky only has blue?

Would it remain beautiful?

The blue sky lives in solitude of its dull monotony

Then God creates the cloud to accompany the blue sky

The blue sky becomes happy with the new company

Together they spent their days enjoying the view of the world below them

But one day cloud realize that she is fading away and turn to rainfall

The blue sky felt so sad until it almost fades its blue color to grey

But then the rainfall went to the sea and ascents to the blue sky to reform itself

They met and each of them tell their stories. They finally realized that they will live together, again…

VZ

A CONCERT OF POP MUSIC AT THE HEART OF THE CITY

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What do you see during the concert of pop music at heart of the city?

 

Is it the setting of the stage where the blinking lights are all around?

 

Is it the unstoppable speech of the host?

 

The native and foreign singers who sing with their beautiful voices?

 

The dancers who shake themselves in an amazing style?

 

Or, the crowds who surface like ants?

 

As for me. I am not only looking at these things.

 

Eyes of mine supposed to only look straightforward, yet they draw me to see a five-year-old boy holding a bunch of five balloons and selling them around.

 

Then, a father holding her little daughter buys a pink balloon from the five-year-old boy who sold the balloon. The father gives the balloon to her daughter. The little girl laughs out excitedly.

 

After that, a woman came along and took the little girl from her father. She kissed her daughter with laughter.

 

The three of them stand right in front of me holding the pink balloon they just bought and watching the concert of pop music at the heart of the city.

 

Now, I am the one who cannot see that concert of pop music at the heart of the city.

 

VZ

Largo Lecidere, Dili, Timor-leste, August 29, 2017

An Office Colleague

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#1

When you are here, it is noisy.

When you are not here, it is tranquil and mute.

When you are not here, there is no trouble.

When you are here, there will be trouble.

Yet from the trouble you brought with you, it had made us find the solution together.

You, noisiness, trouble and solution, we never let go of each other.

#2

It is no use for you to continue to tell everyone a fiery story about the ugliness and bad deeds of someone in order to impress your listeners. Probably it does sound amazing telling those stories. However, one day, neither you shall be infallible of mistakes.

O, my friend, the human being is indeed not perfect at all.

 

VZ, Dili, 2016

My Young Brother’s Birthday

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My young brother had his birthday today

There was no birthday cake, no candles to blow

Only some words of hope and prayers

‘Happy birthday my young brother.

May the day bring you more joy and happiness

May you grow as great man for your world

May your future be bright as the sunshine

 

To My little bro Dino

VZ, 16 April 2017 

THE NIGHT OF HOLY THURSDAY

 

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On the night of the Holy Thursday, silent.
The hymns resonated.
Echoing from the cathedral of Baucau city
Sung by people who believe.
I sat alone, silent.
Listening, reading and asking.
After finished the supper with his disciples, what did Jesus do after that?
Whether He will also sit alone in silence like myself and listening to the hymn?

VZ
Baucau, 13.04.2017

From Dili to Jakarta via Bali (1)

It was the last day of June 2013.

I was full of excitement as a teen.

Waiting for my Sriwijaya flight at the Nicolau Lobato Airport in Dili.

With a mind of a wanderer, I asked,  “Would this trip be a jolly?”.

Later the flight came and I went ahead in a tremble along the departure gate.

I got on the airplane; a beautiful air hostess with red dress greeted me.

She had the most beautiful smile of the day.

I showed her my boarding pass; she guided me to my seat.

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I sat contently yet carefully paying attention instead.

Another air hostess was demonstrating the flight safety guide.

After an hour, the plane left the ground and started to take off. My heart jumped.

‘I am flying high!’ my mind exclaimed.

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It was my first trip from Dili to Jakarta.

There is a short transit at Ngurah Rai airport of Denpasar in Bali.

That was also my first time to see Bali, although just at a glance.

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Down there, I saw Bali’s beautiful blue sea with the white cliffs.

The red-brown houses formed like beads.

They spread over a huge green carpet of its green field.

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A very long bridge shaped a curvy line over the sea.

How I wondered to explore those places one day.

“Oh, how wonderful isn’t it?” myself said.

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I had heard about Bali since I was a child in 1990s.

People said that Bali is an island of gods, a paradise for tourists.

That time, I wish that one day I too could visit Bali, as a tourist.

I wanted to see the gods. I wanted to enjoy being at its paradise.

Finally, my wish did come true. Even though only for an instance.

Vitalia Ze, Dili-Bali-Jakarta, 30 June 2013.

A Taxi Driver’s Grumble

 

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Photo: http://www.dsw-photo.com/Travel/A-trip-To-Bali-Dili

 

Yesterday, in the afternoon, I stood on the roadside of Caicoli Street hailing a yellow taxi, which then stopped right in front of me.
Immediately, I opened the door and sat in the seat behind the driver, and then said, ‘ Please take me to Becora maun*. “The driver nodded as he continued to drive.
From the car window, I looked at the weather of Dili that was having a gray overcast. Perhaps, soon it will be raining. I felt the taxi is running a bit slow.
“Will you hurry up sir? Actually, I’m in a hurry. “I begged.
“Yes, mana**. But on this hour, it is usually jammed. I also want to be quick but there are many cars in front of us. “I sighed impatiently. In front of us, a Land Rover car also drove slowly.
“Yeah. You are right. This hour is usually a jammed hour. Usually, the most stalled roads are the roundabout of Merkadu Lama Street, and the crossings of Audian and Kuluhun Street. ”
“Yeah, those places are the point of congestion in the city center of Dili.” The driver replied.
We arrived at the Audian intersection road and there was a traffic jam because it was going-home time. One and two traffic police officers were on standby guarding in the middle of the road but traffic jams kept trapping the people. We were forced to stop for a few minutes before getting through.
Mana, look at those police officers. They only served there until the high ranked officials passed by. After that, they too will go home.” Said the driver.
“Really?” I asked, surprised. “I did not know about this. Instead, they must be on guard until night, mustn’t they?
“Right mana. They supposed to do so. Until now, the traffic police we have do not stay up until nights. Do you know what mana? The traffic police officers often make us their victims. “He sighed.

“Victims? Victims of what? “I asked curiously.
Each time they do a checkpoint, they often try to find excuses to blame us so that we pay a fine. ”

“Geez. Is that true? Then you would have to complete all the documents from being fined, right?”
“Yes, of course.  We indeed already have the complete document and driving license. Otherwise, how can we drive our cars for public transport? Ah, these police officers also do bully on us. If we complete the document, they will check our lights. If the lamps are complete, they will check if we were wearing the full uniform or not. If we were caught only wearing our pants and not wearing the shirt then still we will be fined. Yet mana, the uniform has a thick fabric and it got us sweltering. Especially on a hot day. ”
“Hmmm … really? Did they give you the bills or ticket to justify their reason to fine?  Usually, this ticket or bill should be paid at the transportation department office and not be paid directly to them.” I said wistfully.
” No mana. Not at all. They did not even give us any bills or ticket when they fine us. They just insisted us to pay the fine right away. We have to give away the money so they can let us go. We cannot be stuck with them all day long. We need to chase our passengers to earn a little amount of money for our family.” He continued to grumble but I look at him in disbelief and felt a little sympathy for him.

 

“And mana. What even worse is that these police officers sometimes also liked to threaten us. Especially those who are from Lorosa’e (Eastern regions of Timor-Leste). If they knew we are coming from Loromonu (Western regions of Timor-Leste), they will continue to hold our small mistakes and not letting us go quickly. While for other drivers, if they are known both come from the  Lorosa’e, they would be allowed to go as soon as possible. ”
“Ah, that’s not fair maun. Maun and your friends should bring this as a complaint to the Department Of Land Transportation office. Do not just let it happen. Later, they may behave worse in their actions. ”
“Yes, we supposed to be so mana. But what can we do? Later if we report to the Transportation Department office, we will be sent home. It is just a waste of time, though. “The driver said in a desperate face.
When we had reached the front of Fuxida shop, a Chinese-owned shop in Kamea road of Becora, I immediately asked him to stop.
“I get off here maun.” I looked for my purse inside the bag and pulled four coins valued 50 cents each to give him.
“Thanks, maun. Do not give up ya. “I said smiling and then got out of the taxi and shut the door. Instantly, I saw a beam of spirit in his eyes.

 

*maun = brother in Tetum language

*mana = sister in Tetum language.
Along the way of Caicoli-Becora, Dili, 3 March 2017