In winter 2021, I stepped on my feet for the first time in Kraków, Poland. I arrived at the Głowny Station and entered a tram carrying two big pieces of luggage that I had brought. Inside the tram, I felt that many locals were staring at me from head to toe with unwelcome eyes. That specific occasion has made me wonder, what was wrong with me? What made them starring me suspiciously?
Until finally, I attended a class on Central European Politics and Culture and discovered that Poland had only been democratised in 1989 after a few decades under a communist system that limited their interaction with the outside world. For those who experienced that specific era, my appearance with ‘coloured skin’ can be a strange thing that they have never seen before.
In winter 2022, I decided to go back to Poland to finish my study and intern for CIM Horyzonty, a Poznań based intercultural organisation. I came here with a mission. Suppose I am the first Indonesian they have ever seen and met. In that case, I want them to know that Indonesians are a friendly, knowledgable, developed, and open society because I can be their only reference towards Indonesians.
Finally, I would like to thank CIM Horyzonty to facilitate my introduction of myself and my culture to the Poznań public. I adore the work we do, and it indeed was one of the most wonderful experiences in my life here in Poland.