One day, when I was in seventh grade, Mrs. Indra provided a puzzle to us. She asked us a question in English instead of Bahasa.

“I have six legs when I’m walking, but I have four legs when I’m running. So, who am I ?.”

Thus the content of puzzle questions from Mrs. Indra. We all sat silent and thinking. What was the answer of Mrs. Indra’s puzzle question?.

The class was quiet for a moment. Minutes passed, and no one of us dared to raise hand to answer our beloved English teacher. Mrs. Indra waited and smiling on front of the class. Her face was covered with a triumph looking.

In the eerie silence, suddenly I giggled in a few seconds.

“Why are you laughing, Mit?,” asked Mrs. Indra to me.

“Do you know the answer of Mrs. Indra puzzle question?.” she continued.

“Maybe Ma’am.” I said not sure. I was afraid my answer would be wrong indeed.

“What’s your answer Mit ?,” asked Mrs. Indra to me. Her face seemed curious. I was increasingly pounding and awkwardly. Actually, I was not sure with my answer as well.

“Man riding a horse, Mrs. Indra.” I replied with a hesitant voice. Of course I answered with Bahasa instead of English as well. I was not clever enough to speak English indeed.

Afterwards, unexpectedly Mrs. Indra laughed and told the class,

“Mimit was right, the answer is a man riding a horse”, said Mrs. Indra giggled. I was shocked by the fact that my answer was correct. I chuckled at the end of Mrs. Indra’s statement. Then the class was sullen and grumbling to me because they could not answer Mrs. Indra’s question.

Then she moved to the blackboard and write the answer to her riddle herself. On the board immediately posted Mrs. Indra’s round and sweet handwriting, ‘A man riding a horse’. Then she left us out of class for a while.

Apparently she headed to the school office of Administration. She wanted to see my mother who had been a clerk of the school’s BP3. BP3 was the association of students parents on our school.

“Damn Mimit, Mrs Toha!.”

“What’s going on, Mrs. Indra?,” my mother responsed anxiously.

“I’ve questioned a puzzle for three classes students, none of them could answered my question except your boy, Mimit.”

“Damn that Toha’s son.”

“Aparently, Mimit’s so clever indeed,” she continued with a giggled.

Then Mrs. Indra return into our classroom and continued her lesson with us.




(pict by Iwan J Prasetyo)