In memory of Muridan Widjojo

Muridan Widjojo
This photo does not belong to me, it was taken from Muridan’s personal page

I kept on doubting whether I should write this post at all. It seemed unimportant. What I thought and felt seemed unimportant. So I decided to just write this one, without making drafts or outlines or everything. And no, this is not a flash fiction. It’s a ramble, written just to make sure that I can get this out of my head and look back at this entire ordeal and see closure. Closure just in knowing that all that I have at this moment, I’ve put it here in this post.

Mr. Muridan Widjojo, I heard that you passed away. I don’t know what time, where or why precisely. And in that simple line lies the fact that I don’t know you that well at all. I’ve only met you once, and I don’t think we talked that much. But it was an impressive moment. A moment I wanted to capture, a moment that I hope I will always carry with me when I continue my live and hopefully my work.

At the bottom of it, I know I’m just a fan, I’m an admirer of your work, and I wish to continue it. I had doubts because I was perfectly aware that I don’t know you that well, if any. But now that I’m researching and reading your work, in reading it I feel like I got to know you better. In the process of reading your works, you became a mentor to me. You perhaps did not know that, and now you never will. I always thought that we would meet again and at that time, I will be more at the level where I can say that you inspired me. So with your passing I’m mourning the mentor that never was, and never will be. With all those selfish sentiments aside, I hope you understand that I meant what I said the first time we met: ‘It’s an honour to meet you.’

Rest in peace Bapak Muridan Widjojo, we’ll carry on.

NB: Muridan Widjojo worked as a researcher on Eastern Indonesia in LIPI (Indonesian Institute of Science). The goal of his work was to facilitate peaceful dialogue in the solving the problem in Papua. Bapak is the way to say ‘Mr.’ in Indonesian language.

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