Behind the Scenes: An Indonesia Moment


I let myself go back tonight.

It’s not a place I go often, but I do revisit once in awhile, whether through pictures, video, memories, even reading a random book sent to us by our organization before we even began our journey.

There are times when it’s good for the soul…and just plain good for my heart…to remember.

I know it’s something I’ll never have again.

But I do like to have those moments when Indonesia feels so real again…so close I can almost taste the nasi uduk and gepuk or even the pisang goreng. I can hear the call to prayer, the constant honk of car horns, the little beep of a passing motorbike. I can even smell the not-always-wonderful scents that permeated Jl. Cihampelas during a Saturday drive to CiWalk.

Sometimes I worry that the memories will fade…not just in my heart, but the hearts of others. I think of our sweet pembantu and wonder if she will ever hug my daughter. If we will ever hug her again.

It hurts sometimes.

And tonight, well…I knew I’d go sometime.

I went to the cupboard…and I dug through and found the very last packet of Indonesian coffee, one I’ve literally been saving for a night when I knew I’d want it. (And, clearly, patience was my shining virtue because the expiration date…which I totally ignored…was approximately a year ago. Give or take four months.) πŸ˜‰

I plopped on the couch…and as I sipped and savored and remembered the many, many mornings when I’d begin a day of teaching 4th grade, coffee mug in one hand, drinking this exact beverage…it was like the memories and moments flooded back into my heart.

It felt like a beautiful, wonderful lifetime ago and at the same time, just a tiny blink spanning then and now, too.

I guess that’s the way it is with memories we hold so deeply…they feel like forever snapshots, ones that we tie into that corner, hoping that our hearts will always be strong enough to hold on.

And as the happy tears fill my eyes…but they only brim, they don’t drip…I give thanks for these moments.

The kind when I can smile and know that it was good.

Β **************************

Happy Tuesday, friends! Today is the day when I join some sweet friends at Crystal’s space for Behind the Scenes. We’re sharing the silly and sweet and sometimes-tear-jerking moments that happen behind the camera lens…I hope you’ll take some time and pop over to read some great stories.

Social media and online relationships can make us feel like everyone else has it all together. We’re edited, proof-read, Pinterest-perfect versions of ourselves (or so some might think!) when – in reality? There is an unfinished pile of laundry around the corner. That cute toddler smiling for the camera just had a massive meltdown seconds ago. That yummy breakfast-for-dinner you just showed us on Instagram? It’s because the cat licked the chicken that was supposed to be for dinner.

“Behind the Scenes” is a fun link up where we show those photos – but tell the real story behind them.Β The sneak peek behind the scenes, a look past the edges of the photo to the real life behind it.



  1. Beautiful sweet friend. And really, I don’t think expiration would stop me from coffee either πŸ˜‰ You are precious to me!!

  2. Thank God for the memories we can hold onto that keep us moving forward :) Mmmmm coffee. :) Happy Tuesday, friend! Praying for and thinking about you lately!

    • I do love me some coffee…pretty sure that’s not a secret here, though! Can’t wait to have an (in)RL coffee with you NEXT WEEK…wowza! Can’t wait…love ya, friend! :)

  3. “It felt like a beautiful, wonderful lifetime ago and at the same time, just a tiny blink spanning then and now, too.” So many of the beautiful times in our lives He gives are held in this way. I love the heart you still hold not just for Indonesia but for God. I pray that one day God does open the doors for you to return. Have a great week.

  4. This is such a beautiful memory Mel. But it just makes me want to hear more! I hope you’ve written (or will write) about this time – it sounds like a beautiful adventure. Thank you for allowing us to hold these moments with you for this moment.

    • I’ve written it out…hopefully a publisher will think it’s good enough for a book. That’s what I’m praying! :) Thank you for your sweet encouragement, friend…you are a blessing!

  5. This is lovely, Mel. Those memories are a gift from God. The coffee sounds yummy!

  6. What a lovely way to soak in those memories! I’m glad you had that time.

  7. I Think that is Awesome! Little remembrances like that are a good thing to have in life…And so it coffee :)

  8. Great memories friend! I have missed reading your posts and seeing your comments on mine. It has been a rocky time. I resigned from my job and getting used to a new routine, and before I knew it almost 2 months had gone by. Glad you had some good coffee today!

    • I was just thinking of you today…it made me smile to see you here! I’ve been bad about keeping up on blogs…the busy of life took over. I’m sorry. :( But I’ve missed you…headed over to your space now! Hope you’re doing well, friend. :)

  9. How bittersweet are those memories – times so good we know we will never have them again! I love reading little tidbits about your time in Indonesia! And I can’t wait to see you at Allume next week. Can you believe it’s next week?!?!

    • I know…it feels so surreal that it’s finally here! Can’t wait to attack you with a giant hug!!! :) Thank you for your sweet encouragement, too. Next week, friend!

  10. How beautiful. I often think of my travels too. I feel your nostalgia.

  11. I’m so glad you paused and let your heart feel all that those years were to you! I love how smells and foods can take us back to a place in our past. :) (So was this motivation to put the finishing touches on your proposal?! :))

    • Haha…maybe! πŸ˜‰ The proposal is done…the first round. It needs a LOT of tweaking, but I’ve got the next few days for that. Feeling good that it’s finally at least on paper. Thank you for your prayers, friend…you are such a blessing to me.

  12. Just lovely! And, I adore how you weave coffee into so many of the important moments in life πŸ˜‰ This is why we weren’t meant to be friends :)

    • I was just thinking as I published this that I’ve posted a lot about coffee lately…I guess it definitely falls into the important-in-life category! πŸ˜‰ Hope you’re doing well, friend…happy Wednesday!

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