Our First Honeymoon to Bali (May 19 – 24, 2014)

Badugul Bali - Armetra & Poppy Honeymoon

Love doesn’t make the world go round.
Love is what makes the ride worthwile..

Well, it’s been quite very loooong time since I wrote on my own website. I think, I stopped writing since I’ve got married (and then having baby as well). Little ‘bit busy (and little ‘bit lazy too) and perhaps also less motivation to write something. Beside, with very fast development of social media nowadays, it made personal blog story became little ‘bit redundance. However, hobby is still a hobby, it’s not something that I can loose entirely. And, after several long night tried to convince myself to write again, then here it is, I’m finalizing the last draft posting that I haven’t yet completed, before I went “hibernate for writing” in the last two years.

This event have already happened almost two years ago. After our wedding ceremony, few weeks later we went honeymoon to Bali. Bali is the most famous island for tourism destination in Indonesia. The main thing for honeymoon is that, we hope going for honeymoon can give us the memory that will last a lifetime, the kind of trip that definitely has to be special, beyond our own wildest dream. And at that time, I was thinking Bali would be the best place to do it. But, the honest truth is, any place to go for honeymoon will do, as long as I’ll go with my beloved wife. 🙂

In order to get a very joyful experience, we decided to take itinerary from one of the best independent agent from Bali, found by my wife through her friends. We took 6 Day & 5 Night Honeymoon Package. The package include all food, Breakfast at our Villa, Lunch at famous restaurant with signature dish, and also Romantic Dinner at various beach & restaurants. The package also include private transport (car) with dedicated Driver that also act as our guide (and also photographer for sure).

Since this is the honeymoon package, surely it have all romantic experience. Dinner at the beach? Check. Romantic sunset view? Check. Romantic Cruise? Check. Enjoying the view? Check. Snorkeling? Check, and so on. And surely, every morning, there is a driver that will pick us, and took us for touring around Bali. It’s really good experience to actually enjoying time without the unnecessary stress to find transport and the like.

Day 1 – Arrival, Check-In, and Romantic Dinner at Jimbaran Beach

On the first day, We arrived in Bali on the morning around 10.00 am, and they welcomed us with bouquet as well. No harass, no rush, just a friendly welcome that made our mind felt relax and set the holiday mood perfectly.


From the airport, then we continue to check-in to our private villa. We chose a private Villa with private swimming pool inside of our room. The villa and room is quite, very comfortable, and of course having romantic atmosphere, where we can really enjoy our honeymoon time, far from any “noise”, no social media, Just be happy and enjoying the togetherness.

This is our room pick, Astana Kunti Villa – Honeymoon Suite:


Then after check-in, we took a rest. well rested f, at night (near sunset time), the agent that we hired, took us to Jimbaran beach for our first Romantic Dinner and to enjoy the sunset view at the same time. The joyful experience, that made us feel like “King & Queen”. The restaurant staff welcomed us, and set-up the table and everything at the beach itself.

Romantic Dinner Jimbaran Beach Bali

After a lovely dinner, then we went back to our Villa room, well rested and to be ready for the next day tour.

Day 2 – Tanjung Benoa Snorkeling and Uluwatu Tour

The second day, this was the day for Watersport experience at the beach. So, after breakfast, we went to Tanjung Benoa beach. It’s almost one hour drive from our Villa to Tanjung Benoa, located in the southeast of the island and very close to Nusa Dua. This beach is famous for Watersport activities in Bali due to having a calm wave compare to other beach in Bali. There are various Waterpsort available here, such as Jet Ski, Parasailing, Seawalker and Flying Fish, etc. We took most all available activities, and since we’re local (Indonesian), the price is quite cheaper. The agent who provide Watersport activities at Tanjung Benoa will charge higher price for foreign people.

Our best moment, surely when we decide to take “Sea Walking” activities, and they have the staff that will take video for us during our adventure below the sea. Check out the video:

Continue reading

Our Wedding Ceremony – The Second Day (May 11, 2014)

Our Wedding - Once in Lifetime

I still remember the moment when I first saw her.
I couldn’t stop staring at her.

There was something about her eyes and her smile,
that took me to a different place.
I wasn’t sure what was happening to me,
but I knew it felt exciting and scary at the same time.
It was like coming “home”, only to no home I’d ever known.

As the time passes, and we started to know each other,
it was a million tiny little things that, when you added them all up,
they meant we were supposed to be together,
and as stupid as it sound, I always believe it….

And so, here we are… Sit together on “pelaminan”…

So, let’s continue this story. Like I said, there are 3 main events on our wedding, the wedding vows (I wrote here), the first ceremony (I wrote here), and the last / final ceremony on the second day. The second day ceremony is like “main” day, the D-Day for all of our wedding ceremony, so to speak. This second day ceremony was held at my wife’s parent’s house.

The ceremony was actually receptions, and the sequence were actually simple. Me & my wife “basandiang” (sit together) on “pelaminan” (special decorated altar of minangkabau culture with long chair). Then, guests from family relatives, our parent’s friends, people from neighborhood, co-worker, and other invitations will come to celebrate with us, and greeted with various traditional-Minangkabau food. After guest finished eating, they will come near “pelaminan” stand to congratulate us, and of course taking photos with us to capture the moment. The ceremony will start at the morning, and it will be end at night.

Us & Our Parents

Captruring The Moment of Our Wedding Ceremony – Us & Our Parents

The Rich Culture of Minangkabau’s Wedding Ceremony

The special decoration of altar “pelaminan” shows the rich culture of minangkabau. When we sit on this “pelaminan”, it felt like we’ve been treated like “a king & a queen for one day”. It was dominated by gold color & red color that reflect for the feeling of glorious, happiness, and the sense of togetherness. It convey the message, that marriage is the window for the happiness.

Our Pelaminan - Minangkabau Wedding

Our Pelaminan Wedding – Minangkabau Culture

Continue reading

Our Wedding Ceremony – The First Day (May 10, 2014)

Our Wedding Ceremony - First Day

Once in awhile,
Right in the middle of an ordinary life,
Love gives us a fairy tale…

What I’m feeling, I think, is joy…
I’ve felt that blinkered rush of happiness.
This might be one of those rare events that lasts,
one that’ll be remembered as months & years wind & ravel.
One of those sweet, significant moments,
that leaves a footprint in our mind…

It’s like I just wake up in the mornings,
and feel like I’ve just had the most incredible dream.
I’ve just dreamt my life…

The thing is, a photograph couldn’t ever tell its story.
It’s like something you have to live to understand.
Where things shift into focus for a moment,
and everything just makes sense….

Well, I know it’s like 2 months late post. But, like I said, I’ll make the post of our wedding story gradually, little by little. Because, sometimes to really being able to describe the big moment of our life with a carefully chosen words are still not enough to picturing those moments. It’s like something you have to experience it in order to understand it.

So, after Wedding Vows day, there will be wedding ceremony which will be held for 2 days. It’s a common thing in our culture, Minangkabau culture in West Sumatera, Indonesia. The first day, the ceremony will be mainly to be held at my parent’s house.

Going to My Wife’s House at Night After Wedding Vows

But, before wedding ceremony begin in the next day after wedding vows day, during at night, my family & relatives & our clan will take and accompany me to my wife’s parent’s house first. People from my clan would also bring the “rebana” (tambourine) group with me. (Note : “Rebana” / tambourine is one of classic music instrument used in Minangkabau culture).

Maanta Marapulai at Night After Wedding Vow

To be short, that night, when we arrived at my wife parent’s house, my wife family & relatives & their clan were welcomed us, and then after gathering and what not, Rebana group will play their music instrument as part of entertainment and also as part of showing respect to my wife parents & their relatives & their clan.

Barabano Maanta Marapulai

The value is that to acknowledge that my family have given me a blessing to move and live with the new family (my wife family) in a good will, and my wife family also welcoming me to be part of their family.

Wedding Ceremony at My Parent’s House

Then, in the morning, my wife family & relatives & their clan will bring & accompany me back to my parent’s house, where the first wedding ceremony will be held. This time, I’ve already official to be called Bride and Groom (in Minangkabau language, it’s called Anak Daro & Marakpulai).

Sebelum Berangkat ke Rumah Marapulai

Continue reading

Wedding Vows (Ijab Qabul) on May 9, 2014

The May 9 2014 Day at Jami' Al-Syarif Mosque

This part of our lives,
this “once in a lifetime” part,
is called “Happiness”…

Starting from the day of Friday, May 9, 2014, will mark as the starting day on open-up the new chapter of our lives. This was the biggest moment of our life so far, a so called “the holly promise in front of God (Allah SWT)”.

May 9, 2014 is the day of our wedding vows which took place at Jami’ Al-Syarif Mosque of Sidang Koto Laweh, Tilatang Kamang, Agam, West Sumatera, Indonesia. Jami’ Al-Syarif mosque is also very near with my wife’s parent’s house.

Well, May 9, 2014 is the day when all pieces of puzzles finally falls right into its place, the day when two hearts sincerely commit to each other, the day when two families become one, the day that we both always have been dream of, the day when I finally able to call her the love of my life as “wife”, the day when she finally able to call me as “husband”, the most auspicious and blissful day of our lives, and the day that we’ll always remember on a lifetime.

I still remember that moment, saying out loud sincerely and genuinely of our “wedding vows”. In Indonesian language, it’s called “Akad Nikah”.

Ijab Qabul - Wedding VowsThe Wedding Vows (Ijab-Qabul)

Wedding vows word by me : “Saya terima menikahi anak kandung Bapak, Poppy Handayani, dengan maharnya satu cincin emas 5 gram, tunai, karena Allah SWT”.. The witness declare “sah” (legitimate) after that, and as such I’m officially married my wife. And thanks to God, I have to say the word of wedding vows only one time… 🙂

The Two Families Become One
Getting married doesn’t mean I only marrying her, it shall also mean to unite two families (my family and her family). For me this is one of the most interesting aspects of marriage though; two families, which in general circumstances would never even know each other before, are tied together for life.

Us and Our ParentsUs and Our Parents

Yes, seeing their child finally getting married surely to be one of the day that all parents look forward to. And for us, words will not able to express how much our gratitude for both of our parents. The two families become one. Thanks Moms and Dads, for everything.

Well, there are two big days in any love story, the day you meet the girl of your dreams and the day you marry her. Well, here we are, finally able to make reality on getting married, tying the knot, and commit to each other, the perfect ending to a perfect love story.

And in the end, all we can do is promise to love each other with everything we’ve got. Because love’s the best thing we do…

Our Wedding – The Once in a Lifetime…


And here we are…

Armetra & Poppy Weding Invitation

The “Once in a Lifetime”…

Destiny is a pretty big concept, when you think about it.
Where you are in life, how you got there,
what would have happened if one thing or another,
had been different..

We do understand that the reason for the time exist,
is so that everything doesn’t happen all at once.
Fate has a way of putting an important event in front of us…

And, if it’s up to us for reading the sign of destiny,
It was a million tiny little things that,
when we added them all up,
they meant we were, indeed, supposed to be together.

And, I knew it.
I knew it the very first time we met each other,
11 years ago…

It was like coming home,
only to no home I’d ever known…

We do realize that love doesn’t change.
Love doesn’t become untrue.
Love doesn’t fade, nor disappear…

Well, It’s funny looking back at those days,
Because, sometimes,
Life slows down just enough,
for all the pieces of puzzles,
fall right into its place…

This part of our lives,
this “once in a lifetime” part,
is called “Happiness”…

Fabiayyi âlâ’i Rabbikumâ tukadzdzi bân”…

Remember, a wise man once said,

Barney Best Quotes 2

So, we will be honored
at your presence to celebrate with us, 
on our wedding, the once in a lifetime…

Preparing Married Life for Living Overseas

Marriage to Live Abroad

“Love doesn’t make the world go round.
Love is what makes the ride worthwhile…”

Well, the time is near, and I’m counting days now. I’m finally arrived at the crucial stage of my romance life. The exciting & thrilling part, so to speak. It’s like, my romance life have been moving forward (in a good & exciting way), from “the topic of the who, the how, or the when kind of stuff, to the phase of finalizing & starting to execute for marriage life preparation.

And the big challenges are that, not only I have to prepare mentally or physically to marry the woman that I love, I even have to prepare & set-up the marriage life to live overseas for both of us. Big tasks are at the same time! So, I’m writing this post for every couple out there who lives abroad but is getting married at home, or planning a wedding from a distance. And not only wedding, but also “Life After Wedding” itself.

Supposed if you go to any wedding or marriage/love websites, or reading from magazine of book, I believe mostly they’re aimed at people getting married, or some section in regard to set-up marriage life after wedding, but definitely not for expats life. So, whether you’re male or female, young or older, planning a big event from the other side of the world (both in actual miles and cultural “distance”), have its own challenge.

As such, most of my energy & attention are very much focusing on this task nowadays. Although it’s kind of daunting, but I don’t let worry and stress overtake the joy I felt in preparing this. After all, this is the kind of thing for being in love, isn’t it?

Continue reading

Happy 26th Birthday, My Dear..

Hello there, my dear..

(I’m sorry that I can’t be there with you at this very moment.
But hopefully, this video specially made for you, can make you smile)..

My Dear,
For these 11 years,
I realize that love doesn’t change..
Love doesn’t become untrue..
Love doesn’t fade, nor disappear..

The truest test of anything, is time, indeed..

But, sometimes,
Life slows down just enough,
for all the pieces of puzzles,
fall right into its place…

In the end, I just want to say,
Happy 26th Birthday…
All the best for you…

It’s not only your birthday that I celebrate,
but many wonderful moments and stories with you..

You make tomorrow worth the wait,
and yesterday worth remembering…

Dear My Future Wife..

Dear my future wife,

I feel like everything in my life has led me to you.
My choices, my heartbreaks, my regrets. Everything.
And when we’re together, my past seems worth it.
Because if I had done one thing differently,
I might have never met you…

It’s never been easy for me,
to find words that go along with your “rhyme”,
But this time there’s actually something on my mind,
So please forgive these brief awkward lines,
I just want to write something honest, for you…

My dear,
I want you to know and understand, that….
If you are going to fall in love with me,
It’s only fair that you know to who that you are falling in love with…

You are falling in love with my insecurities,
my constant worries of failure,
my scared feeling to be just ordinary,
my narcissism, my self-confidence, and my idiot self-ego,
which embarrassing sometimes…

You are falling in love with my immaturity,
And my constant need to feel to be appreciated,
and also my need to feel independent…

You are falling in love with my overactive reaction when watching sports game,
my constant obsession for internet,
my stupid blog and stupid writing that no one reads about…

You are falling in love with my unrealistic hopes and dreams,
which you know that I’ll never given-up,
because the fact that I seriously believe they could come true,
And my obsession with trying to figure out how to success…

You are falling in love with how I’m a hopeless romantic at heart,
enthusiast to watch romance movie & hearing love song,
my fiction fantasies of true love, despite my masculinist views…

You fall in love with my my illogical thought process,
And my tendency to act like a smart & wise guy…

Continue reading

That “Someday” is Today

No matter what you want in life,
you’ve got to take that first step..
Regardless how much metawork we do,
or how much we talk about what we want to accomplish,
in the end, it’s our actions that define whether we fail or succeed.
Take a step, even if it’s a small step..

I remember when I was teenager, that I used to say, “Someday I’ll become that person, someday I’ll get everything that I want, someday, and someday”. Even when I was in college, this “someday things” became part of me also. “Someday I will be rich, someday I’ll go looking for better job, someday I’ll travel the world, etc, etc”..

The truth is, this someday things are growth with me, that make so accustomed that there will be a someday in my life where everything will finally come together. I have to admit it feels good to write today in these new ground rules. Because these someday things are lies, lies, lies… It’s seems almost unfair that at such a young age we buy into these lies and get stuck forever in this fairy tale idea of life.

Continue reading

Menjadi Calon Imam Untukmu..

Aku belum tahu, apa namamu pernah terucap dalam serak suaraku,
Aku belum tahu, apa asal usulmu pernah hadir dalam diskusi kehidupanku
Aku belum tahu, apa wajahmu pernah mampir dalam mimpi-mimpiku
Namun hidupmu akan selalu mengaliri semangatku
Sebab, kau adalah hadiah agung dari Tuhan..

Maklumilah bila sampai saat ini aku belum datang,
Bukan ku tak ingin, bukan ku tak mau, bukan ku menunda,
Tolong jangan paksa aku, aku hanya ingin berkarya..
Karena hidup itu bukan hanya untuk memikirkan siapa jodoh kita.
Tapi, berpikir akan membangun visi & hidup seperti apa bersama jodoh kita..

Aku masih dalam proses pembelajaran, muridnya si guru kehidupan..
Belajar untuk konsisten dalam perjuangan hidup..
Belajar agar kelak mampu menjadi Imam yang kamu syukuri kehadirannya..
Dan, adalah sangat tidak adil bagi hidupmu,
jika aku membebanimu dalam lingkaran ketidakmatanganku sekarang..

Di mana pun engkau sekarang, janganlah gundah, janganlah gelisah
Aku akan datang, tapi memang tidak sekarang,
Karena jalan ini masih panjang..
Resah hati itu kadang memang datang tanpa diundang,
Tentang sekelebat bayang, tentang sepenggal masa depan..
Tapi, karang asaku tiada ‘kan terkikis dari panjangnya jalan perjuangan,
hanya karena sebuah kegelisahan..
Lebih baik mempersiapkan diri sebelum mengambil keputusan,
Keputusan besar untuk datang kepadamu..
Karena, siapa aku, bukan hanya dari apa yang ada di dalam hatiku,
Tapi juga tercermin dari sikap & langkahku..

Aku akan belajar untuk mampu berbicara benar padamu,
dan bukan hanya sekedar membenarkan kata-katamu..

Continue reading