Friday, November 11, 2016

A Long Story Behind the Story You Can Skip

I returned from Germany 3 days ago, and I am hesitating to write this story because I know it's gonna be a long story.

Maybe you don't ask and maybe you don't want to know the whole story, but let me tell you, because I have many time to waste.

so... I went to Leipzig, to be exact to Dok Leipzig Film Festival for the second time!!! YAYYYY!!
The first time was to be a visitor, and the second time as a filmmaker :)
Mission Accomplished!

When I started the project, I didn't know it would be a roller coaster ride, of course it's fun to visit Leipzig twice, but there are equally a lot of hardships.
Random sh*tty things keep happening, starting from the company sell the office building.  Although I am now happy living with my parents again,  I wasn't easily adapted to the "new" environment.  I was really brokenhearted when I have to leave Jakarta.  I was still working for the company but I didn't feel like I was still part of the company.  I started to feel like I was a disposable employee, and never stop wondering, did they need me?

The financial condition of the company was not good and the best choice was to find another job.  That time I had a lot of options, I got a lot of job offers. But I didn't take any of it because there was a higher possibility that in the new place, I wouldn't have time to finish the animation.  So I chose the animation. I stayed with the company.

I really wanted to finish the animation as quickly as possible so spent my weekends and spare time making the animation,  I stop taking freelance project, and stop making amigurumis which caused financial and mental damage.  To relieve stress, I go shopping like crazy and spending money on random things.  Luckily two of the random things were subscribing a gym membership and taking language course, so at least I spent the money on good reasons (although I'm still not fit, not slim, and still bad in speaking German).  

After became slightly healthier and happier, I started making the animation again but then... I ran out of money, so I spent two month working many freelance projects, and "coincidentally" started working on the main job also from home.  Afterward, I started finished the animation, right on time with the Dok Leipzig's deadline at July 7.  What I meant on time was actually only sending the raw file, because the rules mentioned that they accepted raw files/ unfinished project too, and give 2 weeks more to finish it.  And it was finally finished  at July 22 before 12 o' clock, German time (means 6 hours extra).

What happened during the next 2 months was : I intensively stalking.  I googled every day, looking for any announcement, because I can't wait patiently.  I did my job for the company really good and fast, because I had to keep myself busy so I didn't have time to check google.

And at September, I finally knew that my animation was selected.  I spent restless nights preparing files required including a web site. And I still stalking, because I couldn't sleep well unless the official selection is published/ posted at the web.  Because few years ago my animation was selected by a local festival but never published in the catalog, and replaced by foreign animation :(

And since the festival didn't provide travel funds, I had to ask around.  I could borrow money from my parents, but they never offers me, and I have a pride, I don't want to ask for money from my parents, especially because they were not interested with my animation :'(.  There was no news for a long time, mostly because it was a busy time, there were so many festival, so I was feeling really down because I thought I would never watch my own animation's world premiere.  And guess what? I waste my money like crazy again.  

I was really stressed when suddenly my boss got creative and sending a meeting invitation at Friday.  I still remember how furious I was, but I still go to Jakarta.  Of course I had a secret agenda which to ask for a "proof of employment" from the human resource.  I need that "proof" for Visa arrangement, just in case.

At October 8th, I was really stressed out, I ask around again (in the middle of the night), and some friends suggest me to make a funding proposal to the government (which actually a very last option).  So I made proposals in bilinguals but then at October 10th, they published the official selection of Dok Leipzig at their web and Ta-daaaaa... finally I got a sponspor to fund my travel.  I cried a lot that day, happy tears.  And I send a notification email to my boss.

So at October 12th I went to Jakarta,  met the sponsors, sign the contract, watch some horror movie at Kineforum, IKJ (I need time to relax, okay?)
At the very next week, I have another email from my boss to meet the human resource in Jakarta.  They complained about my plan to go to Germany.  They said, it wasn't fair if I take a leave when my colleagues are being mutated or laid off, and how I would make the production process disturbed. (oh yes! that sh*tty story!)  But they eventually "give me permission to go", so I went home, prepare to sleep, stalking the embassy site and someone canceled his visa appointment schedule.
So at the very next morning, I go back to Jakarta again to make my visa.

I was still working, even harder than before, so that my company wouldn't have anything to complain about my trip to Germany.  I meant lately since I knew that my animation got selected, I've been working harder than usual, because Boss said we have to proof that we are the assets for the company  (oh what a speech).
I barely have any sleep, because I also need to prepare many things when suddenly, there's another call for the Human Resource.
I was in the "angkot", so I have to stop somewhere to take the call, it was raining, and it was almost dark.
The company didn't allow me to go to Germany and they ask for my resignation.  I didn't have any choice.  It's not like I wouldn't go to Germany just because the company didn't approve my leave, but as an employee I did make a lot of mistakes, why they have to ask for my resignation now?
I was at the side of the street, in front of my hairsalon.  I almost do "Britney haircut". NO way.
I sat in the corner, inside the angkot. Try to not cry, when someone played Bruno Mars "Cause your amazing...."
That's the company's name.
I didn't cry that time, I wait until I was home.
I cried when I told my parents.

oh by the way, I didn't try to negotiate, because they ask for my resignation only 3 Days before I go to Germany.  I had no more time and I was exhausted.  It was my 4th time in a month going to Jakarta.  I resigned at the same day I took my passport (with the Visa approval).  I cried a lot. again.
Were I know they would cut me off, I would made Visa for a longer visit, to visit my birthplace.  How could they ask for my resignation after the Visa approved?
But you know, that night I slept real good.

The next day, I was unemployed and although I would get the travel funds, I had not received it.  So I borrow my sister's money to buy the flight tickets. (YES, D-2, I still didn't have the ticket, but the company already laid me off).  Oh, and the company ask for the works to be done before I go to Germany.  I didn't do it.

D-1, I went shopping again with my friend, watching Doctor Strange.  Cursing the company.  Finally I got the travel funds so I can pay my sister's money back.

And D-day, I went to Germany.  And I didn't want to think about that company during the trip.

Will you take the risk of being unemployed to go to Germany?
I bet some of you will say yes.  I will say yes.   I don't regret it.  But it is painful, really.

Oh, please don't be sad if you don't get any souvenirs from Germany, it's not that I don't want to bring you some or I don't care about you, I just can't afford it.  remember... I am unemployed. really.

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