Pertaruhan (At Stake)

Just finished watching this great documentary film anthology produced by Nia Dinata last night. It made me burst into tears. It hit my heart badly. I lost my words. Kept thinking about it all night long.

This movie is a compilation of 4 short documentaries about Indonesian women and their authority on their own body. There's Ruwati, who must go through a tumor surgery but feels reluctant to do it since her future husband doesn't allow it for the sake of her virginity. There's also Riantini who cannot express her sexual orientation in her hometown.

Second story is about the pros and cons of woman circumcising. What's the point? Is it related to health, religion or just a tradition? The third story is about the treatment for unmarried women. They have to face a lot of difficulties from paramedics when they want to take pap smear test just because they don't have marriage certificate.

And the last one, the most touching story, is about Nur and Mira, who have to make their living by crushing the pebbles during the day and become prostitutes at night to earn only 1$ for their service.

If people said that documentary movie is boring, you have to check this one out. You'll feel that you involve with it. You'll be curious and at the same time a bit stressful thinking about what will happen with all these strong women. Watching this movie make me realize that women are special with our uniqueness, strength and weakness. This movie reminds me of Perempuan Punya Cerita, produced also by Nia Dinata, but I think Pertaruhan is better, perhaps since it's a documentary movie and talks about reality around us, it just seems so real.

The School of Essential Ingredients

A very beautiful and delicious story. Soon after you finish reading this book, you will feel that you want to eat it. Yep, that's because Erica Bauermeister wrote her debut novel with all her heart. No wonder if this book will definitely warm our heart.

The story is about Lilian, a 30-something-woman, who owns a restaurant and loves cooking. She holds a cooking class in her restaurant every first Monday of the month.

There are 8 students in her class. Each of them has his/her own life including the problems and reasons for attending the cooking class. Beside telling about the recipes, the story also reveals about life of the students. There's Claire, a mom of 2 kids, who is so busy with domestic chores and children stuffs, until she finally doesn't have any me-time for herself. There's also Carl and Helen, an old happy couple that have family secret, Tom, who still mourns for the loss of his wife, etc. All students have their own interesting stories.

I love the way the author conveys her story. I can feel the aromas, the flavor, the textures of all foods cooked in this book. I dream of attending a nice cooking class as described in this book.

A very recommended book. You will love it. Reminds me of Joanne Harris' Chocolat. Penerbit Bentang's already translated it in Bahasa on September 2009 under title Kelas Memasak Lilian. Good translation though.

Green Tea Latte

Feeling so sleepy at the office, finally I decided to go down and headed to Starbucks with a friend:

Me : "What do you think of this Green Tea Latte?"
Him: " It tastes exactly like
Teh Cap Kepala Jenggot"

Lately, I'm in Love with....

After more than 13 years becoming a 9 to 5 employee, lately I just feel tired. Out of the blue, I begin to think to quit, to resign, to leave it all behind and start a totally new thing. But...what does it suppose to be? Thinking, imagining, dreaming again and again and still a lot of options, too many actually, scattering in my head.

  1. Checking this blog really making me want to take a sewing class and dreaming someday I'll be able to sew clothes, bags, wallets, etc for my girls.
  2. While looking at this blog and her cute cakes and cookies, put me in a big dilemma, either to join sewing class or cooking class first or even both of them at the same time? hohoho....
  3. or taking writing class and someday I can produce great stories as written by one of my favorite author here.
  4. Amazed by beautiful pictures here, don't blame me if I suddenly want to buy a new camera and learn how to take a good picture.

Okay, stop it, the list will go on and on, I know I am just a person with so many dreams, this moment, I am going to enjoy my life, spend great time with my two princesses and at last feel grateful for all.


This book is a memoir of Imran Ahmad, a muslim Pakistani who was born in Pakistan and at the age of one year, in 1964, moved to England with his family. Imran would tell in detail his childhood as an immigrant. He experienced the good and the bad things as well. He had to face the unfairness, such as: the racism, either in his shool or in his neigbourhood. He also had a cultural shock, as a muslim who had to mingle in the west culture. He even got confused about his religion and tried his best to get the best explanation about it.

The writer told his story from his point of view at one year old until he reached the age of 25, since he was so honest in telling his life, therefore you will find a lot of funny things here. Following his story will make you feel like spending your childhood together with him. A really joy to read.

Already translated in Bahasa by Penerbit Mizan on September 2009 under title Bocah Muslim Di Negeri James Bond, I know I feel uncomfortable either with the title, but perhaps Mizan has its reason for that. Still it's worth to read.

Six Suspects

Vicky Rai, the son of the Home Minister in Uttar Pradesh, India, has been shot dead by one of the guests at his own private party. The police arrest 6 people with guns in their possession as suspects.

Arun Advani, India's investigative journalist has a mission to find out the murderer. In doing so, Advani reveals all 6 eccentric characters of the suspects. There are the bureaucrat, the actress, the tribal, the thief, the politician and the American.

All of them have their secret motives to murder Vicky Rai since Rai is notoriously known as a rich spoil brat who always believes that he is above the law. Therefore he can do anything he wants without any law consequences.

The second book written by Vikas Swarup after Q & A (now filmed as Slumdog Millionaire). Still as brilliant as his first book, even this book is more interesting than the first one. A fast-paced read which will leave you satisfyingly stunned. It will take you around cities in India. You will not be able to stop it. You will be too curious to find out the bare truth and its unpredictable ending.

The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo

It's been such a long time, I have never enjoyed a criminal book this much. Yup, this book written by Stieg Larsson, a Sweden author and journalist, really impressed me a lot. I couldn't put it down. I glued to it till late at night.

This book is the 1st book of the Millenium Trilogy, a story about a long lost girl --40 years a go-- of the wealthy family in Sweden, Harriet Vanger. Her uncle, Henrik Vanger is still curious about the case, he assigns Mikael Blomkvist, an investigative journalist and also the owner of Millenium magazine, to do the investigation of Harriet's case since he's sure that the murderer is one of the Vanger's family member.

This book will take you around Sweden and its cities. It's packed suspense, criminal and financial case in a very smart way. I love the lead character, Blomkvist and also his partner, a very genius girl, Lisbeth Salander. I can't wait for the 2nd book "The Girl Who Played With Fire".

Already adapted into movie in Sweden and received many awards. A very recommended book, already translated in bahasa by Qanita on July 2009.