09 September 2008

Jakarta Shopping

I have decided that I must make a mental note to take my little camera with me every day and start taking happy snappies of my travels. Most days it is just between home and the office. However, there are some days where I take the plunge and branch out into the big bad world of Jakarta shopping malls. Yesterday, was one such day!

It was decided that I would meet my better half at Pacific Place down in the Sudirman Central Business District. Pacific Place forms a sort of mega-shopping-hotel-center. There is a Ritz Carlton Hotel there. I have been there once before but it was not really ready for business. Yesterday was my second trip to view how the other half lives. It is probably one of those places where you could get lucky if you are into celebrity spotting or something. This is not the reason for the camera though.

I actually went there because the better half had just finished dinner with a friend and I figured there was an Optik Melawai there and I need a new pair of glasses as I am getting blind in my old age.

Anyways, I was surprised to find airport type security in order to get into this huge shopping center. There was none of this hand-held metal detector stuff here. They have a metal detector gate and an x-ray machine. Yes, shoppers, an x-ray machine. I was carrying two bags, a laptop and another bag with some paper based files so off they went through the x-ray machine. I wandered through the metal detecting gate to the tune of many beeps. Back I came and my keys and mobile phone had to get x-rayed too.

I was waiting for him to ask me to take my shoes off and place them in the basket for x-ray as well. Fortunately he did not ask.

I guess there are many people who see this as the cost of safety and security, and do not mind the inconvenience. Others just go through the motions as if you want to get inside then you have to jump through the hoops provided. For me it is just sad. It is sad that the world we live in and inhabit now requires such levels of security.

The reason for the camera was to photograph the x-ray machine so everyone could see.


Anonymous said...

I had to admit that I was actually surprised when I found out that none of the shopping malls in Europe have this kind of airport security system. My first expression was "Aren't they afraid that somebody is going to bomb this damn mall?"

Even one of Copenhagen's busiest station Nørreport st, which has been target for many bombing plans here, has the minimum security you can ever imagine. Someone can just come and put a plastic bag on the corner of the station without noone knowing it. OOPS did I just give someone idea? Hope not

Rob Baiton said...

Writer One...

My guess would be that you are probably not the only one that has thought about this!

Even with the increased levels of security in Jakarta a lot of the time it is just going through the motions. Some people's bags are checked and some others are not. Sometimes Jakarta has that feel of, "it's only a matter of time".

tere616 said...

I think it's because of Ritz Carlton name and the location of the shopping mall which located near the Jakarta Stock Exchange building.

Where all the terrorism issue, the name of the hotel, probably become the reason of an X-Ray.

But compare to Manila, when I visited that city on October 2003/4, all the visitor who entered to the mall, will be examined by the Manila's Army with a weapon in their hands.

I was so afraid because it was the first time I've experienced the situation like that. And also because Jakarta at that time was so peaceful.

I went there on the same year of Bali Bombing and flew back to Jakarta the next day after Bali bombing. Amazingly that on the same date of Bali Bombing, there's a bomb explotion also in Makati.

Anyway, as a citizen, my view on that also the same like you. Found it weird, but can't do much, otherwise I would be late to Kidzania things.

Rob Baiton said...


The world we inhabit now is a different place to the one that I was born into and grew up in.

I think that this is the real point that I am trying to make here with this post.

It is also interesting to what degree security has developed in various places and how some security is seemingly taken more seriously than other places.

I guess we just have to deal with it. Perhaps this is part of the price we have to pay for our security.