Mrs. Dewi taught memorizing Al-Fatihah and short surahs. She also taught us reading Tahiyyat Awwal and the Akhir. It’s been used when we were praying five times a day as muslims. Tahiyyat reading was written in a colorful buffalo by Mrs. Dewi’s handwritting herself, one piece for one student. One side for Tahiyyat Awwal reading, and another side for Tahiyyat Akhir reading.
Moeliarta Roekiandari, or commonly called Utje, get cardboard red buffalo, while I get the green. Mrs. Dewi write Tahiyyat reading with her handwriting which was neat and beautiful. Of course we were very happy to get those piece of paper from Mrs. Dewi.
Mrs Dewi Setomi asked us to laminate the buffalo paper. Utje, my friend bench, laminate it with beautiful arches pattern. My mother brought my own to town and get a simple and plain laminating motive. My laminating motive was straight, like most belong to my other friends.
Mrs. Dewi also taught us to pray. She told us to bring prayer rugs and other prayer paraphernalia. After that, she took us to the Masjid Al Falah at Bandung Street, close to our school. Of course, at that time we did not know that prayer mats and prayer gear we brought could be used as a dowry when we got married. Years later after we grew up.
One day, I entered the classroom when my friends were playing on the school yard. In the classroom I met a stranger. The girl was wearing the same uniform as mine and my friends. But we had never met before.
”Are you a new student here,?” I asked.
“Yes,” replied the little girl. The little girl had beautiful eyes. Not round like the eyes of my friend Dewi, but gleaming like a morning star. I immediately liked this timid little girl..
“What’s your name?” I asked as I reached her hand acquainted. “Fiva,”s he replied with a welcoming hand.
“Let’s we play outside,” I invited the timid girl.
Fiva followed my steps out of the classroom. Outside the classroom, she became acquainted with my other friends ther. Apparently she’s also willing to play with the other comrades.
One day at recess, I asked my friend, Bayu. “Bayu, who do you think the prettiest among our friends?.” “Dewi,” said Bayu without hesitation. Then he asked, “Who do you think, Mit?” I was just short retorted, “The same.”
On the other day, I asked Nanda, “Nan, who is the most beautiful of our friends?.” Nanda thought a moment and replied with hesitation, “Dewi.” Then he asked with a view wonder, “Why, Mit?.” I’m just responding shortly, “Nothing.”
(photograph by Emile Seno Aji)