Just Take Me There So I Can Be Objective

Jakarta, Jakarta.The ultimate metropolis of Indonesia, whether we like it or not. Compared up there with various international cities like London, New York City, Paris, Milan, and so on, if only so much as on a shopping bag of certain fashion boutiques; usually to convince people that the brand is actually international, not made in some housing complex in Tangerang.So how does Jakarta measure up to London, one of the oldest cities in the world?

  • Congestion: Jakarta, check. London, check.
  • Popular landmarks: London has the Tower Bridge, Westminster Abbey and Big Ben, to name a few classic landmarks. Jakarta has Monas, Bunderan HI and… hey, does anybody actually know these landmarks outside of Indonesia?
  • Diversity: since London has been around longer, there are a multitude of peoples from all over the world. Jakarta wins here – it’s the melting pot of hundreds of ethnicities from all over Indonesia, and more, since there are a lot of foreigners as well. But imagine a melting pot – really messy.
  • Taxis: London is famous for its black taxicabs. Jakarta is famous for its rip-off taxicabs. Seriously.
  • Petty crime: Hm. I think it’s about the same level at both places.
  • Food: Oh come on! Jakarta wins. Really. Want to prove me otherwise? Take me to London and take me on a culinary tour.
  • Living costs: Well if you love living expensively, live in London. You can live in Jakarta with various budgets, from the pauper’s allowance to the rich second wife’s binge. Hell, you can eat a really good meal for 1 quid in Jakarta. What does that get you in London?
  • Public transport: Oh, London’s the winner on this one. The simple fact of the Underground makes this a no contest. Jakarta has fleets of CO-spewing buses, beat-up mikrolets, and the motorcycle taxis that seem to be more omnipresent than the police.
  • Airports: Heathrow airport is a bane for Londoners – but I think they’ll quiet up when they meet Bandara Soekarno-Hatta. Let’s not even mention the smaller airports dotted around the Greater London area, that actually work. Have you even seen the airstrip at Pondok Cabe? Kemayoran is now a big road.
  • Nightlife: depends on your taste. Hm. Pub crawl or all-night dangdut?
  • Hygiene: Hm… do we really need to delve into this one?
  • Public toilets: Hey, Jakarta wins this one, seriously! We charge our citizens to use the public toilets. Imagine the revenue streams from that one.
  • Politics: like nightlife, depends on your taste. Multicolor acronym varieties or the Labours and the Tories yet again?
  • Weather: constant heat or constant drizzle? Well at least London doesn’t have seasonal floods… well, not that I know of.
  • General friendliness and hospitality: ooh, can’t say much on this item.

So, any other points of comparison I should cover, you think?


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About barijoe

Failed Musician, Reformed Gadget Freak and Eating Extraordinaire.

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