Shopping in Jakarta pt. 2

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Shopping in Jakarta is a study of extremes, you can find bargains on the street or shop like royalty.  Jakarta has some of the most opulent and glamorous malls you will ever see and whether you are searching for high end fashion or electronics you can find it all.  Mall culture in Jakarta is well established and malls are used in some ways a lot like parks might be used in other cities.  One local saying is that “the only parks in Jakarta are car parks” (parking lots) and while there is some truth in this, when the malls are clean, cool and entertaining the AIG understands the appeal, especially on a hot humid south east Asian day.

mall 1

The Smallest Market in the World

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img_8485Throughout Delhi, wherever you look capitalism reigns. The most notable evidence of this to western eyes is easily the street stall markets that seem to be everywhere you look.  A combination of small sheds, tables and wheeled trolleys using the sidewalk (or road) for their shop space. What really surprises you  is the diversity of shop that is represented in these markets; hairdressers, stationers, electronics and even small manufacturers. AIG have been using a local market printer who’s shed is taken up almost entirely with a large floor standing colour laser printer.  To give you some context of the size of his shop, when he has to replace the paper in Tray 1, he has to step outside.

The Only Thing Stationary in Delhi

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Stationary-01In need of office supplies the AIG ventured out to find the biggest stationary barn in CP.  Much to their dismay “Delhi Stationary Superstore” turned out to be a one aisle corner shop.  There we learned a lesson in the importance of the shopkeeper, the owner had one…of everything.

Shopping in Delhi is a very human experience, most stores cannot be negotiated without help and you come to realize that there is an amazing efficiency in the entire process.  Once everyone expects to ask for help, the shopkeeper no longer has to concentrate on displaying their wares for the customer, they shelve them in a manner that suits their business.  This is why with less than 250 square feet Delhi Stationary Superstore rivals Staples and is the greatest store in the world.