2002 was the year that I was fortunate enough to know her existence. I just arrived at the office and there she was sitting on the sofa. Something about her at that moment when I saw her attracts me. I don’t know, could be Cupid had shoot his arrow on me. Because all of my colleagues were downstairs’ having their breakfast, I placed my stuff at my cubicle and went down to join my colleagues. They told me a new girl would be reporting in today as our new admin clerk. So its Erlinna’s first day working. I also found out that she was the niece of Lintas Square Supervisor back then.
Of course at that moment I didn’t really give it that much thought because I was busy with other arrangement, not until one fine day, when I was sitting at the front desk. I was trying to print a letter when she asked me about Tun Mahathir and Anwar Ibrahim. That’s when I was interested to get to know her more. While the rest of the girls of her age are busy with gossips, fashions and what not, she was interested about politics. The chances for you to know someone like that at her age are very I mean very slim. Or it could be because of her friendliness or bubblyness. Like I said, something about her attracts me. During the course of her work there, I grew fond of her. But sadly, it is quite when all the good one are taken, and she is already taken. From what I heard and saw, they seem to be a very loving couple. As much as I like her, I have to let her go. I don’t believe in best man win (BMW) kind of situation simply because I for sure don’t like other man flirt with my girl, you dig? So with a heavy heart I have to let her go and concentrate with other things in my life. When she left the company end of 2002 to further her study at then Maktab Perguruan Keningau, I felt that it was the last time that would see and talk to her. It felt that I have lost something in my life.
Come February 2003, when everyone was enjoying Chinese New Year celebration, my friend Jolivia, her sister and I went to Danum Valley. Jolivia and I had planned to go there for quite some time before this and we thought that this was the best time to go. Just before we were about to depart to Lahad Datu by bus, to my surprise, Erlinna texted me, asking how I’m doing, to which I replied that I was fine and was about to go to Lahad Datu. She wish me safe journey but I promise her that I will text her when I’m back. It is a coincident when the first place I sat foot at Lahad Datu; which was Kampung Kokos, was her great grandmother village, which I found out about it after we were a couple.
After I returned from Danum Valley, as promised, I text her, asking how she was doing. When she answered me “Baru habis bengkak mata” I knew she’s been crying and there must be something wrong. I found out later on that her boyfriend had cheated on her. Was this fate or what? I didn’t straight away tell her that I like her. I just simply just listen to her, that’s all. She came down to KK a few times and I would accompany her, sometime she would ask me to pretend to be her boyfriend to make her ex-boyfriend jealous. And there was time she asked me to be her pet brother because someone in her college insisted on her becoming his girlfriend. I don’t really agree to that because it would simply ruin my chance to be with her but because she wanted to avoid being alone with that guy so I agree to it. Thank god it was cancelled.
Not long after that I told her that I like her very much. She didn’t believe me at first because she thought that I was pulling her leg. Well, who doesn’t? If I was on her shoe, an engineer who was 8 years older than my age, how could that be? Well I convinced her that it was not a joke, citing why I like her very much. I even gave her time to think about it. We texted each other after that, general stuff, no lovey dovey stuff, just plain general stuff, seriously. It was as if I never reveal my feeling toward her. And when she brought up the subject, I would tell her again why I like her. Not long after that, we were teasing each other. Something like “I’m going to Keningau tomorrow” and she would answer “I never said that I would want to see you” then I would answer back “I never said that I going there to meet you” and we would laugh at it. And a few weeks after that, it changed to we’re missing each other’s company, missed walking endlessly around KK. 12th April 2003 at 1:40 am at Anjung Senja, I proposed to her, properly, and she said yes. That was the start of 4 years of our life. Those 4 years can be summed up on our fotopages.
I found this old text message when I was doing some cleaning which Erlinna send to me after she was discharged from the Hospital after her cancer operation
I did things behind ur back,dat most u know n some better my secret.those dat made me realize smhow i made wrong,wrong 2me wrong 2u.n also made me realise dat no one can take ur place,till death do us part.it doesnt answer d question actly,does it?!! O well, i’m lucky i found u.. Btw,yap karang sms! Smbil mengelamun skejap2!! Luking back in2 past!
Well dear, we are lucky to have found each other. Before you get any wrong ideas, she didn’t cheat on me; she was simply a very naughty young lady. Today, 11 March 2009 mark her 2nd anniversary of her demise. She will be missed by everyone. Coincidently, the first place where I first sat foot at Lahad Datu; which was Kampung Kokos, was the final resting place for Erlinna.
I end my entry with a nice song by an Indonesian band. Please enjoy Baiknya by Ada Band.
kehilangan dirimu menyakitkan nurani
separuh nyawa terbawa
menyisakan perih di hatiku
* baiknya semua kenangan yang terindah
tak kubalut dengan tangis
baiknya setiap kerinduan yang merajam
tak ku ratapi penuh penyesalan
ku hanya terus berharap
ini bukan kenyataan
kau pergi tinggalkan dunia fana
akhiri kisah asmara kita berdua
** baiknya semua kenangan yang terindah
tak kubalut dengan tangis
baiknya ku lepaskan segala kepedihan
mengapa semua ini terjadi
betapa ku mencintai dirimu
ku tak kuasa menahan kesedihan
yang begitu dalam
repeat *, **