A Real Indonesian Love Story
The Jakarta Post | Tue, 07/29/2008 2:10 PM |
184 cm and 127 kg , he dwarfed a Japanese mini-pickup truck parked near my
recently here in
Kevin’s always left a big impression. He didn’t know that this time he’d also leave his heart.
“At this stage in my life,” said the 50-something American, “I thought I might be a confirmed bachelor and would never know what it was like to be married.”
But that all changed at Pondok Indah Mall one memorable day. He was introduced to Evelina by a mutual friend. And over Vietnamese food and chocolate-avocado drinks, they began what they both believe is that proverbial “match made in heaven.”
“The first thing that registered with me was her smile,” recalls Kevin. “And she carried herself well, very much a lady.”
“I looked deep into his eyes and I was praying,” remembers Evelina.
The tales of aging bule descending upon this country to carry away naïve country girls are many. It’s often not a pleasant image. But this case was far from that stereotype.
“He isn’t a smoker, drinker, gambler or bad-tempered. I’m happy to get involved with Kevin,” she explains.
Kevin is as decent a man as you’ll ever meet - a straight-arrow, hard-working guy who never forgets to send you a birthday card. There are maybe a handful of people in your life whom you know you can always count on. In our 30-plus years of friendship, Kevin’s been at the front of a short line.
Before his trip, well-intentioned office colleagues warned him to be vigilant against another stereotype – the Asian female predator seeking a rich meal ticket out.
So it’s significant to note in this love story where their second date took place. After what they both called a “romantic” dinner at the Mulia Hotel, there was no question where they wanted to be the following day.
“I got up early the next morning and went with Evelina to her church,” said Kevin.
In the home of the world’s largest Muslim population, what are the odds that two Christians from 13 time zones apart would find each other?
“The Lord answered my prayer… he is the right man for me,” believes Evelina.
two were inseparable for most of Kevin’s three-week stay. From a “couples” reflexology treatment to a
quick jaunt to
Throughout the years, I’ve set Kevin up with voluptuous anchorwomen, sweet salesgirls and even Sunday school teachers. But I hadn’t seen him dote and emote with a woman as he did with Evelina since our days on-campus.
He arranged for flowers to be delivered at her workplace. He gifted her with a beautiful string of pearls that she had never felt around her neck before. And he opened doors and pulled out chairs for her, something that he felt proud to do.
“I am interested in her thoughts and opinions, and I don’t feel lonely when I’m with her,” he says. “She is not only pretty, but smart, attentive and caring.
Watching Kevin get his very first pedicure was a sight I never thought I’d ever see. But there was Evelina, on my living room floor, tenderly rubbing away the rough skin on his feet and then trimming his nails neatly.
“He is a good person,” she says. ”I realize that I love him.”
Back in the U.S., Kevin calls 2-3 times a week, text messages daily, e-mails regularly and sends a letter or postcard a couple of times a month.
the very near future, I want Evelina to come visit me in
“Evelina and I are talking about getting married and starting a family together. And I want to will that dream into reality.”
“I hope we will become a happy family, being in love forever,” says Evelina.
I wished I had had more “buddy” time with my friend on his visit, and mentioned that in a phone call the other day. But I said I understood that this was nothing short of a life-changing time.
And I know that for certain now, as he told me about his goodbye departure day at Soekarno-Hatta.
“After I went through security, I looked back at her through the windows. My chest started to heave, my eyes began to tear up and I started to cry,” he said.
Something tells me that this is for real.