I tweeted that nearly a year and a half ago. I was sitting in my 2.5×2 m2 rented room in Jakarta, a room with no air-conditioner, minimum ventilation, and a shared bathroom. That was what I could afford. Cried silently. Indonesia did not work out for me. I hated my country. Moving back to Indonesia from America was like moving from a mansion to a slum. The corrupted government, the minimum wage for workers, the slowness of people, and the society who just don’t know where to throw the trash so they decided to throw it to the nearest ground: couldn’t believe it is my country. My blood.
My name is Kitty Sitompul, I’m a Fulbright scholarship alumnus and I graduated with honor from Madison College in Madison, Wisconsin, USA. I’m an entrepreneur, English teacher, Public Speaking lecturer and party host. Add one more title and that would be a guest blogger at Henry Timisela’s blogpage.
Coming from a mid-class family, surely we wouldn’t have afforded a quality education in America. My mother is a single mom, she is a priest who also works at the church administration office. I have always loved working. I have worked since I was 17, voluntarily taught the children of a local orphanage. When it was time for me to go to university, I would go to the class in the afternoon and worked the whole evening. I’d go back to my rented room at around 10 or 10.30 PM everyday. Sometimes it would rain and I’d come home wet. Other times I came home crying because it was late at night and somebody stalked me when I was walking home. Often times when I was sitting at the bus in Jakarta’s heavy traffic, my mind would wonder if I’d ever be rich. Teaching or working at the campus whenever there was a part-time job, I’d do any kind of job. Whenever I received my salary, I’d take some for primary expenses and give the rest to my mom, although she had never asked for it.
Then there came the big break
God opened the way that I was selected to receive a scholarship to America. My life changed completely. Enjoying every minute of life in America, I made a lot of achievements: being an honor student, getting an award, being the primary representative for a student association, presenting at a student’s State forum. Coming back to Indonesia over a year later, I became a little arrogant. I saw my country differently and acted as if I was too good for this. Too arrogant too soon. I treated my privileges like they were my rights. Arrogance diminishes wisdom.
Failure after failure, then I’m back to my old self.
I am so grateful that God didn’t use me to change the situation. He used the situation to change me. After series of jobs that did not work out, I came back to my passion: teaching. Talking to people. My eyes were opened. Indonesia is the reason I was sent to America. Madison English Club is built by the faith that my country can change, one person at a time. It is a club of people with the same interest, which is in English. But more than that, I have a mission, which is to create a better quality of Indonesia’s human resource. With the knowledge gained during studying in the States, I designed the curriculum to be integrated to some basic morals such as integrity, the art of giving, honesty, professionalism, and all done in English, so that my ‘kids’ are ready to bring a good name of Indonesia internationally. We run a volunteer program as well, to have them experience the amazing feelings of doing something to others.
What Indonesia needs is more people to love Indonesia because if I love my country, I wouldn’t corrupt. If I love my country, I would educate it. If I love my country, I wouldn’t trash.
Often times when I was sitting at the bus in Jakarta’s heavy traffic, my mind would wonder if I’d ever be rich.
Obviously I didn’t know better.
For Henry Timisela’s Blogpage.