I was surprised and watched my crackers. Mrs. Maryam was true, my cracker’s piece seemed smaller than crackers cut by my other friends. I immediate assault my cracker’s piece with malignant. It was like toying me. Moving to the left and to the right made it hard to bite and eat. Sometimes it moved upward as well. Depending on the movement of my mouth and my friend’s mouth movements nearby if they grabbed their crackers with their mouths.

Mrs. Maryam Yusuf shouting encouraging me.

“Come on, Mimit, you can do it.”

From a distance I saw my homeroom teacher Mrs. Yati clapped and shouted encouraging. I’m more eager crackers crashed into me. One small bite left, I jump up and bite my last piece crackers eagerly. That small piece of it apart from the thread that tied it, then I chewed with a rush. Mrs. Maryam Yusuf shouted again, this time louder than ever before.

“Hurraaaaayyyyy, Mimit win, Mimit is a champion.”

Mrs. Maryam took my hand and put me aside from my friends who are still preoccupied with their crackers. The race was still held to find second winners and the third champions.

On the afternoon I had a fever. Therefore, the next morning my mother took me to IKIP Malang Polyclinic in Ambarawa Street for treatment. Doctor Dini and doctor Aswin were a married couple who served in the Polyclinic. Both worked as a doctor. Doctor Dini gave my mother some medicine for drunk regularly for three days. She also gave her a letter to give to the teacher, so I can be absent from school.

I felt sad because it was the day of giving prize winners of the eating crackers contest. I protested to my mother.

“But, today is the day of giving prizes, Mother.”

“Your prize is kept out by the teacher,” my mother replied sympathetically. But I still worried that the teacher forgot to give my first prize winner eating crackers contest that I won.

When I went back to school, Mrs. Yati gave a gift wrapped in brown paper cover to me. I opened the package and was disappointed. The prize turned out to be the same as the prize for the runner-up and champion three cracker eating contest, held the day before yesterday. Equally a pencil box. The difference was, mine are green, while Rudi who won the champion two get a pencils box of red, Joshua as third winner had gift blue pencil box. The three gift of us were exactly the same at the shape and style.

I told my disappointment to my mother. She giggled.

“Whatever the prize should be appreciated and accepted with gratitude.” So the advice of my mother

“Damn it.” I said irritably. Pursed mouth in front of my mother. My mother laughed again and hit my mouth gently with the palm of her hand. I still feel very annoyed.




(photograph by Denies Priantinah)