Self-Interview: 36 Questions That (Probably) Will Make You Fall In Love With Me – Set 1

When I traveled to Vietnam, I encountered two fellow travelers from the United States called Zooey and Melisa on my way to Hue from Sapa. We took the same bus to Hanoi and Hue before we separated way as I had to get off in Hue and they continued their journey to Hoi An.

While waiting for our bus to Hue from Hanoi, we were tired playing bananagrams so we decided to ask each other questions as we barely knew each other to begin with.

Well, Melisa and Zooey have been friends forever, but I was completely a stranger for them so asking each other questions was simply a good idea to ensure them that I wasn’t a creep tagging along. 😛

You thought that asking strangers question would be easy, but apparently, it was quite hard to find a good question to ask… Until Zooey had an idea to ask each other question from the existing list of 36 questions that lead to love.

For those of you who haven’t heard anything about it, it’s an article on New York Times written by Daniel Jones listing the questions. The questions are pretty candid, while it can take you to a personal level in which it is perfect for people to get to know each other better.

So this time, I will do some kind of self-interview and ask myself those questions to help you know me better. I mean, not that you want to know me better, but really I just feel like to write but I’m running out of ideas. 😛

Set 1

1. Given the choice of anyone in the world, whom would you want as a dinner guest?

Vladimir Putin. Haha.

Maybe it was a mistake to tell Americans that I would like to have Putin as my dinner guest, but then I couldn’t think anyone else other than him.

My secret is that I used to have a huge crush on Dmitry Medvedev back when I was in the university simply because I thought he was hot! But no one, again I tell you, no one could beat Putin when it comes to his charisma.

I mean, he’s fierce and he looks like someone who actually knows what he wants. I just want to know what’s on his freaking mind. And if I got to choose anyone to be my dinner guest, then I wouldn’t mind to ask him questions over dinner.

Also, have you seen the video of Putin waving his hand to a pigeon and the pigeon literally saluted him? Also the video of him telling jokes to Obama? And the video of him laughing over one of his ministers thinking that it would be profitable for Russia if they import porks to Indonesia?

Not only that he’s got the style, he’s also got a sense of humor!

2. Would you like to be famous? In what way?

At some point, maybe I’m afraid of oblivion. But then if I got any chance to be famous, I think I’d say no to the opportunity. I’m the kind of person who would sit in the corner during party and pretend to enjoy my drink even when I didn’t just so people would leave me alone.

And for that, I think being famous is not exactly for me.

3. Before making a telephone call, do you ever rehearse what you are going to say? Why?

I used to work in sales, and I definitely always rehearsed what I was going to say before making a call because my voice could be really shaky when I didn’t have any idea what to say. Often times, I even had to write things up on a piece of paper to make sure that I’m on track when it comes to the conversation.

I’m not a really good conversationalist, so I think rehearsal helps me to mess things up a little less than I normally do.

4. What would constitute a “perfect” day for you?

Depends. For example, I love rainy days when I don’t have to go out. You know, the kind of Sunday morning where it’s rainy but you don’t have any obligations to do anything so you can just go back to sleep, enjoying the rest of the day as if you don’t have any responsibility.

But then on my travel, I would prefer sunny day(s) because more often than not, I’d have limited time to actually explore. And when I travel, the more the better. And I find rainy days as an obstacle to easily explore places during travel.

5. When did you last sing to yourself? To someone else?

I just sang to myself right now. I chose Avril Lavigne because that’s how I roll. To someone else? I don’t sing to anyone else but myself. I mean, really?

But if anything, I sang to Heri, my cousin, a few days ago only to annoy him because he asked me to stop singing. Like he had a choice? When I sing, I sing. Who cares if I have annoying voice?

6. If you were able to live to the age of 90 and retain either the mind or body of a 30-year-old for the last 60 years of your life, which would you want?

I think I’d choose the body of a 30-year old. My grandma is in her 80s and despite the fact that she’s alive, she needs other people to do everything else. She can’t get up from bed alone or feed herself. She needs her own caretaker for everything she does.

I can’t imagine living like that, I think I’d keep the body of a 30-year-old just for the sake of ability to do things by myself.

7. Do you have a secret hunch about how you will die?

Honestly, looking at my lifestyle that is far from healthy, as well as the fact that I like to eat anything especially junk food, I’ll probably die from a heart attack.

But deep down inside, for anything, I wish I could just die in my sleep.

8. Name three things you and your partner appear to have in common.

Given the fact that I’m self-interviewing, I have everything in common with my interviewer slash partner. *lol*

9. For what in your life do you feel most grateful?

For the life itself. I mean, damn, it’s a long, complicated journey but have I learned so many things along the way. I’m grateful for the present me because I’ve been through a lot, yet I’m still here.

I think I’m grateful for everything. Although good God, I hope God will give me less challenge and more rewards in life.

10. If you could change anything about the way you were raised, what would it be?

Maybe nothing. I’ve been raised by two parents whose characteristics are totally different from one and another.

My Mom is a devout Muslim who would insist me to go to the mosque to learn how to read Koran, while my Dad is a total liberal Agnostic who would shamelessly offer you coffee when you fast in Ramadhan.

Getting raised by both, it somehow helps me to enhance my point of view about everything. Not only towards religion but also about life in general.

There’s nothing that I would change about how I was raised, although I kind of wish that I could have been raised by parents who love traveling as much as I do.

But then again, I suppose they have raised me well as I could totally do traveling on my own. 😉

11. Take four minutes and tell your partner your life story in as much detail as possible.

So, as you all probably know, my name is Marya Sutimi. People would assume Sutimi is my family name, but in Indonesian, especially in Sundanese culture, we’re not familiar with the use of family name. Sutimi is just my last name derived from my father’s name, Sutimo.

Sutimo itself is the wordplay from ‘si timu’ (Sundanese of ‘the finding’) as my Dad is the first kid in the family, after my grandma got miscarried 4 times prior to his birth.

I was born to a middle class family. My Dad is an entrepreneur, while my Mom is a regular housewife who always tries her best to be a homemaker. When I said that my Dad is an entrepreneur, some of yall might think that he was born from the rich family who handed down a company, but it’s not the case.

My Dad is only a primary school graduate. Yes, you heard me right. A primary school graduate. He came from Ciamis, a small town in the western part of Java. But then once he graduated, he insisted his Dad to go to Bandung (the capital city of the West Java province) as he was eager to see more part of the world. In this case, 4 hours drive from his hometown.

So my Grandpa built a small business in mechanical engineering, in which the teenager version of my Dad would help. He was only 17 when he succeeded to develop his business, and he maintained his bachelor life until he hit the age of 28, the same age as I am now.

The lucky girl was obviously my Mom. She was the nanny in my Dad’s sister’s family. Yes, my Mom was a nanny, she was the caretaker of my elder cousins when they grew up. So apart from knowing me inside and out, she also shared my cousins’ childhood because they practically grew up with her too.

Long story short, I was born in 1989. Like Taylor Swift, but less lucky.

Despite my parents only being primary school graduates, I’ve lived a happy life. We never really suffered from anything economy. Like, things have been hard lately but we always have something to eat on the table.

My parents admitted me to the best schools and university in my hometown. Despite their social status, they could always get along with other parents because their naivete of being someone who’s never really gone to school.

But I suppose I never really disappointed my parents in any way. I graduated with bachelor’s degree in 2011 with GPA 3.20 out of 4. My parents never really pushed me to be a straight A student, so they always think I’m good enough. They’re my biggest fans, honestly.

Growing up, I’ve always wanted to travel around the world because my parents never had time to take me traveling. Just like typical Asian parents, they would be like, “You could travel when you grow up…” and blahblahblah.

Sundanese was supposed to be my mother tongue, but as I speak Indonesian more often at school, my skill in Sundanese got decreased by time. During my adolescence, I started learning English because I was a big fan of Michael Owen. My thought was simple, I wanted to be able to communicate with him if one day I actually met him.

Little did I know, my English skill has taken me into so many places. And better yet, a few years later it got me to what I wanted: communicating with Michael freaking Owen! *fangirl at its best*

First time I traveled by plane, it was in 2010 when I got a scholarship for a summer course in Turkey. Seeing their reaction when I told them that I got accepted for the program, I suppose they never thought that I seriously wanted to travel the world.

The rest was history. In 2012, I got a job in the airline industry and I had to relocate to Saudi Arabia in 2013.

Now I’m back to Indonesia, things could be a little better but I’m not gonna complain anything about my life. I’m a dreamer, and never ashamed to be one.

12. If you could wake up tomorrow having gained any one quality or ability, what would it be?

I think I would like to have gained the ability to disappear when I don’t feel like being somewhere. You know the situation, when you feel uncomfortable in one situation and you just wanna flee?

Pretty much like Apparate and Disapparate in Harry Potter.

Okay, since the first step is long enough for you to read, I suppose I will end the first interview and continue this again tomorrow.

Not sure though, now that you’ve read it this far, is there any chance for you to fall for me in the first step? *lol*


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