Author: Ahmad Tohari
Publisher: Gramedia Pustaka Utama
Pages: 224 Pages
Many college students are idealist, especially the college activists. But many of them leave the idealism away when they've got their job. Because idealism can destroy their career. But few of them still bind tightly their idealism, so did Kabul.
Kabul was an engineer, in charge to monitor all of the project's activities. But so many things made him anxious. The workers had to make a bridge. Below the bridge, flew Sungai Cibawor (a river). Too many fraud in the project. Fund for buying materials was diminished, so their team could only buy materials with low quality or sometimes second materials. Errr.
One day, he met Mr. Tarya playing flute near the river. Mr. Tarya was kinda wise and humorous person. Kabul often shares his anxiety with him while fishing, Mr. Tarya's hobby.
The project is funded by the nation. But, the ruling party wanna make this development as a campaign tool for them. They wanted it to be done when the party celebrated their anniversary. The time was too short for constucting the bridge. It could make the bridge under quality. Hadn't finished the project yet, he was asked to give some materials for the masjid renovation. Aaarrrk.
In the project, there was an administrative worker, named Wati. The togetherness between Wati and Kabul made them looked like a couple. In the beginning of the novel, we could see that Wati liked Kabul. She cared about Kabul too much, and was a bit spoiled with him. But Kabul still thought that nothing happened between him and Wati, they were just friends. Moreover, Wati had got a boyfriend, Yos, a college student.
Mak Sumeh, the owner of meals stall near the project, is the provocator for their relationship. She always provoked Kabul to have a relationship with Wati. It made Kabul felt uncomfortable, so he decided to keep of Wati. Communicated with her only when it was needed. But when he looked Wati was scowled, he felt something weird. Was he attracted to Wati?? Could he keep his idealism for being a good engineer?? For not sacrified others life??
This novel gives the reader representaion of what happened in New Orde in Indonesia, a dictatorship era. In this era, if you don't do the leader orders you would suspected as the member of PKI or ex-PKI (communist party in Indonesia). Then you will be "cleaned". None will find you. This threat can be frightenned the civilians and make them obey all the leader's order.
It seems that Tohari criticized the government and the civilians trough the dialogue of each characters. He criticized that the civilians must be more courageous. Actually I love the topic, it's about social life, about idealism, and bravery.
Even the author is a litterateur, it doesn't mean his writing's free from typos. There were few typos. But it's meaningless. I can still enjoy my reading. Ah, a point destructs my mood (a bit), too many Javanese (language) that i don't understand. :(
*) lagi nyoba posting pake bahasa Inggris..bahasa itu yes, klo udah lama gak dipake jadinya ya gitu deh.. :( (Any correction? Please contact me: firstname.lastname@example.org) >> niat bener belajarnye.. XD