A box of tissues would have come in handy. Yesterday the second My Roots Foundation-meeting took place at the Ambassy of Indonesia in The Hague. Finally I saw my ‘brothers and sisters’ again. Feels special.
In the days before musical multi-talent Sander Metz and I had rehearsed our performance we were requested to give. That is: we sent each other mp4’s. Cause with both a full agenda and a long distance in between our residences, we decided this would work as a rehearsal also. And it did. Somehow we just manage to ‘find each other’ on stage. During rehearsals I couldn’t sing ‘Nina Bobo’ (a song I thought was essential in our repertoire) without getting tears in my eyes. It’s an Indonesian lullaby I also wrote about in my book.
I couldn’t say I was sorry about the fact that I was the only creative person in the family. It gave me a feeling of being unique. In some way. In a positive way.
It set my imagination in full force. It must surely be in my genes. I imagined my biological mother singing songs whole day long.
What would she have sung for me? When I was twenty, I heard this song, ‘Nina Bobo’, for the first time. An Indonesian lullaby. A mother sang it on TV for her baby. It made me smile. A rest came upon me in my head and I got butterflies in my stomach. My body seemed to recognized the melody.
You can hear my voice shaking. During the singing, I saw my friend Marianna crying in the audience. Well, yeah… of course at that point I couldn’t concentrate on my singing…
Did our biological mothers ever sung this for us? Who knows.
Here’s our version of Nina Bobo
And another thing. Yesterday I realized again I am one of the few that has never been back to Indonesia. Meetings like these always cause quite a conflict in my head. How come I still haven’t made plans? Is it a fear I’m still fighting against? A fear of what? Yudi Hoekstra (KINDweesKIND-foundation) urges me to go. “Just do it!” Who knows. Until that day comes, Indonesia to me is still “a land that I’ve heard of once in a lullaby.” I asked the audience if someone actually knew the Indonesian national anthem. Almost no one did – except for Ana and the Indonesian ambassadors. I must admit: I myself had also never listened to the Indonesia Raya before. Until the past few days, that is. For the least I could do, in my view, was reminding us all that it is also sort of ‘our’ national anthem.
Dear peanuts reading this (and I hope you don’t mind too much that I call you peanuts): thank you for another beautiful day as today was. Ana, Christine and Corianne of the My Roots Foundation: please keep doing what you do! <3
Will you be there too on Sunday, November 20th? At the benefit concert for the KINDweesKIND-foundation in Itens, Friesland? Hope to see you then! (More info will follow)
PS in the picture (from front to back), for those who do not know us: Sander, the Indonesian ambassador, Marianna, me and Yudi.