It was late at night and I wasn’t in any hurry. Coming out of an alleyway, I saw a man walking slowly down the sidewalk. As he looked like he was about to cross the street, I stopped my car to let him pass. I waited there for a moment, but to my surprise nothing happened. I looked at the 20-something guy, he looked back at me, with a puzzled expression on his face. I signaled for him to cross, but he just stood still. I decided to wait for another second. This time he gestured for me to pass first. I had no choice, so I moved along.
Here is a bitter truth about Jakarta: We’ve treated pedestrians so badly for so many years that they don’t even realize they have the right to receive better treatment, especially from drivers.