Earlier 2012, me and my family decided to go umrah and I was 12 that time, I didn't quiet know what was the meaning of it, but still, I looked for it. I remember feeling excited, nervous, and also quite scared as I boarded from Soekarno-Hatta International Airport of Indonesia in Jakarta.
It took about 10 hours, maybe, I don't know, I barely remember, but it took such a long time in the airplane. Eventhough it took lots of time, I still didn't get tired or bored because there was a tv in front of each seats that allows us to play games, watching movies/series, listens to musics, and others.
The colourful bustle of Dubai, array of new faces, different languages and vibrant personalities from around the world filled the grand airport of Dubai. I was so amazed with the atmosphere of this place, with such high technologies stuffs and modern skyscrapers that I didn't even know it was exist before. We wait there for around 4 hours and we would take another plane to go to Jeddah and we' would take a bus to go to Mecca.
There was a sense of deep-rooted history and soul in Jeddah, which was in stark contrast to the somewhat soulless Bandung. I saw men dressed in the two white pieces of cloth which they are required to wear from the miqaat (the point at which Muslims performing the Hajj or Umrah must enter into the correct spiritual and physical state that is ihram) and women dressed in white clothes and hijab. The simplicity of it, I thought, was quite beautiful; basic clothing, no makeup, nothing fancy, just back to basics, enchanting their inner beuty..From Jeddah, I would make my way to Islam’s holiest site.
We arrived in Mecca, another metropolitan city with a rich history of trade with it's crowds. We checked into the hotel and as we walked from the hotel to Al-Masjid Al-Haram (the Grand Mosque), the atmosphere transformed from bustle and noise, to tranquillity. When I looked up and saw the mosque, the feeling was surreal. This could have been a dream. I just couldn’t believe I was there, in a land where past Prophets had live and died and where history had been written.
We fulfilled the rituals; circumambulating the Kaaba which was reconstructed by the prophet Ibrahim, walking between the two hills where Hajar, the wife of Ibrahim, once ran, frantically searching for water to quench her baby’s thirst. The Kaaba with Muslims of all nationalities circumambulating resembled the planets orbiting the sun. There was a sense of unity and harmony in the motions, which I was now part of. If had to summarise what I felt in a word, it would be peace.
As we finished our umrah, we did some shoppings, visited historic places, discovered the cuisines and walked around Mecca for the rest 2 days that we stayed here. And after we went to Mecca, we would go to Medina to visit Prophet Muhammad's grave and the beautiful 'Nabawi Mosque'. I fell in love with the architecture of this mosque, it was so impressive and yet artistic.
We stayed in Medina for about 4 days, and we would continue our trip to Turkey. Well as you already knew, Turkey, was sublime. Not only the scenery, but also its climate, architecture and the mixture of islamic-europe culture.
If only I could turn back time, I tremendously wanted to rewind these magnificent moments.