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Yogyakarta- “You can ask me about everything terrible that had happened, but I surely do not want to experience it again, and I just want to erase it from my mind!” a girl in about 20 said it loud. She was a friend of mine. We learned together in English Department 2010 Gadjah Mada University. I asked about her shocking experience in the past. Then, she talked about her experience in 2010, during Merapi Eruption.

Merapi Mountain
October 2010, there was an eruption of the most active volcano mountain in Yogyakarta which named Merapi Mountain. Merapi is an active volcano mountain which erupts periodically, almost every five years. The October 2010 was the most overwhelming eruption. It was because the eruption caused many terrible damages in some places around Merapi, such as Yogyakarta, Magelang, Klaten, and it reached also some cities in East Java and West Java. In order to that, there were many victims from many categorizes of people. One of them is a student of Gadjah Mada University who’s named Najih Suraya. She experienced the big disaster.

“I was on my final examination of French Study, but suddenly before I go to campus in the morning, I heard a big creepy frightening sound from inside of Merapi Mountain”, said her whom usually called Aya. “The French exam was cancelled, but I still did not know what to do, my mother called me last night that the eruption of Merapi Mountain reached my home yet. She told me to be in Yogyakarta. One by one my boarding house’s friends went back to their hometown. I did not want to be alone in such huge boarding house. I would go home!” she told me.

The day she planned to go home, which is in Magelang, by motorcycle, but she changed her mind because the thick ashes disturbed her visibility. She tried to catch a bus with her friend, but unfortunately she failed because there was no bus at all at the terminal. “I went to the terminal but I could not find any bus to Magelang. The buses were gone in the morning, and the last bus just departed in 3 p.m. in the afternoon. Then, my friend and I decided to go home by his car. We doubted about came home safely, I watched from the news that we could not pass the way of Magelang-Yogyakarta, because the stream of some river there brought many materials from Merapi. It was too dangerous”, sadly she said with looked down her face.

Pabelan Bridge

She found many shocked damages through her journey from Yogyakarta to Magelang. “I passed three bridges to arrive home. The first was Krasak River Bridge, which has iron skeleton construction and Wide River. The river was full of rocks, gravel, and also sand of Merapi Mountain which flew through the torrent stream. The trees around the bridge fell down to the side of street. The second bridge was Bridge of White River. All around the bridge was incredibly terrible. There was no house, people, traffic light, and no lighting at all, although that place was one of populous resident. It was very gloomy and dark. Grey sand and ashes are everywhere, looked like snow but snow felt cool, this ashes felt itchy”, she continued. She also said that the condition of the road was very ruined. There were many holes in the asphalt construction, caused by the sand eruption. However, the victims and the citizen were already evacuated the day before. Vehicles moved slowly because they could not see the road and it was raining, the rain of volcanic ashes.

The most shocking event that occurred was the fallen bridge of Pabelan river. “I was in a half of my journey. My friend drove the car slowly to pass the third bridge, because the sound of the strong stream which was heard from inside the car. There was no light so that we just had limited visibility. We could not see what around us clearly, what was behind us, what was in front of us, and even the asphalt of the road, which covered with mud of ashes”, she implied. She successfully passed the bridge slowly in five minutes after. BROOOOOOOOKKKK! The bridge fell down. “I was very shocked, all art of my body was trembling, but I chose not to look at it again”, she said convincingly. “The condition was so silence when I passed through the Pabelan Bridge. In the car we felt that the bridge quivered. Panic! We pray to Allah. We could face it. We passed the bridge and moved the car slowly when sudden attack came. Five minutes after we passed the bridge, it fell down to the river’, she utterly said without took a breath.

“From my experience, I think we have to be more aware of such disaster. We cannot know what will happen in the next minute, whether we will live longer or not, we shall thank to God for everything”, Aya said enthusiastically. We can learn from Aya’s story that disaster can be everywhere, at anytime, and to every people. So, we have to be more careful and prepare everything we need to prevent the same effects, even more.