The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Headlines | Sun, October 18 2015, 3:05 PM
Coming home: Alumni from various classes of Pangudi Luhur boys’ high school attend a reunion at the school compound to commemorate its 50th anniversary, in Jakarta on Saturday.(JP/Seto Wardhana)
Manager Bhayu Sugarda, 40, stood on a flat roof on the first story of boys-only senior high school Pangudi Luhur (PL) in Kebayoran Baru, South Jakarta, lowering his eyes to calculate the distance to the ground, as well as finding a way to reach it.
His friends Yunus Ardiutama, 41, and Patricius Krisnadi, 40, were behind him, trying to jump a guard rail separating the second floor’s corridor and the roof.
Bhayu immediately climbed down a green fence, followed by Yunus and Krisnadi who managed to keep up with him.
Soon after reaching the ground, the three middle-aged friends burst into laughter.
“We have just repeated what we used to do in senior high school,” Bhayu said. “We’re now filled with nostalgia for those days.”
Bhayu, Yunus and Krisnadi were among thousands of men, from teenagers to elderly citizens, who flocked to the school on Saturday to celebrate its jubilee anniversary. They wore T-shirts and collared shirts, which were made of different colors and designs depending on their graduation year.
Bhayu, Yunus and Krisnadi, who belonged to the class of 1993, said that the celebration was a way for them to recall their senior high school memories, including their tight brotherhood.
“At this school, we learnt the egalitarian values that everyone has the same rights and opportunities regardless of seniority, ethnicity and religion,” Bhayu explained, adding that PL students came from diverse backgrounds despite the school’s Catholic foundations.
At the same occasion, prominent director Dimas Djayadiningrat, 42, who graduated from PL in 1992, echoed Bhayu’s view, saying that he used to make friends and get along with both seniors and juniors.
In his opinion, the feeling of brotherhood could grow strongly because many events held by PL, including its well-known art festival PL Fair, often involved students from all levels.
PL principal Titus Totok Tri Nugroho, a Catholic brother of the Immaculate Conception congregation, confirmed the views of Dimas and Bhayu, saying that such bonds had been fostered through generations since the school was first established in 1965.
He further told The Jakarta Post that aside from its brotherhood, PL was remembered for its values of “responsible freedom”. The school, aiming to spur on its students’ good characters, allowed them to have long hair and let them wear any outfit they liked on particular days.
According to him, having long hair meant carrying heavier responsibilities as they were obliged to excel academically, indicated with average grades of eight. If they could not do so, they had to cut their hair.
“When students come to our school, we believe they already have dreams and frameworks. Thus, we are here not only to enhance their cognitive skills, but also their characters so they can be useful for themselves and others,” Brother Titus said, adding that such methodology had managed to create prominent figures in Indonesia.
Aside from Dimas, PL is known as the senior high school of several well-known figures in the country, such as Finance Minister Bambang Brodjonegoro, Bank Indonesia (BI) Governor Agus Martowardojo, businessman Sandiaga Uno, actor Christian Sugiono and disc-jockey Winky Wiryawan. (agn)
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