Swimming pool hopping, part 3: Cilandak Sport Center

The Cilandak Sports Center pool is located just next to the Citos shopping mall in TB Simatupang. It is quite conveniently located, only 15 minutes drive from my house. Entry price is a bit steep at 45k for weekdays and 50k for weekends, correct me if I’m wrong. There’s also an unlimited monthly ticket that costs millions of rupiahs. Not exactly affordable, but again, you get what you pay for.

I came on a Saturday morning, The water quality is very good. It’s one of the cleanest public pools I’ve been in Jakarta.  Shower and changing area is not bad either. I didn’t take pictures because the facilities are good. (Ha!) They have private showers with doors, not sleazy torn curtains. You have your own locker, shoe storage area, and they will provide you with keys. Towel rentai is also available.

On to the pool… Here’s a view from the shallow area looking onto the deep end.

IMAG0168

The deep end area. Thank goodness… It’s not as crowded. The drains are in the middle somewhere near the stairs area in the picture. There were 2 of them, measuring about 30x30cm square. This marked the first time I swam next to the drains. The water was so clean that I could see the drain clearly. When I can see where the drains are, it becomes less scary. That’s one step closer to curing my drain-phobia. Yay!

IMAG0170

Now, for the location of pool drains, I’ve drawn a diagram here. Beware of drains!!! LOL

citos pool

Pros: Clean water, clean showers and changing room, safe locker.
Cons: Pricy entrance ticket.

Verdict: I would swim here again, preferably on a weekday, because there’s quite a lot of kiddies crowding the changing room on weekends.

Swimming pool hopping, part 2: Pertamina Simprug

It was one sunny afternoon when I headed to the Pertamina pool in Simprug. This pool is only 15 minute drive from my house, it is quite convenient.  And entrance tickets only cost Rp. 20.000,- (that’s $2 for you folks), what a steal! So I thought, why not? I’d give it a try.

Maybe it will cure my drain phobia.

Getting there is quite straightforward. Take the Arteri road towards Permata Hijau, and the Pertamina Sports Complex should be after the Kebayoran Lama flyover on your left. After driving through the entrance gate, and past a few buildings, I turn right to see this. Ha.

IMG01624-20121009-1426

Pool was deserted at 2pm. No one was there, and no one was in the ticket box either, so I walked in and take a look around…

P1320846It’s quite a huge complex with 2 pools, 1 olympic size and 1 diving pool with towers. The whole complex looks like it was built in the late 80s and never been renovated since. It’s a strange, almost creepy, serene feeling, almost like seeing the scenery in Prypiat, that deserted post-Chernobyl town. (Not that I’ve been there myself!)

P1320844

Not going near the diving pools for now… I bet there’s a huge drain in there…. *shudder*

P1320845

View from the diving pool. This set-up looks similar to Senayan pool complex, but a little bit smaller. Note the bleachers and podium on the left.

After a few minutes, a middle aged man, smoking, wearing a sarung, walked towards me and I asked for one admission ticket. With ticket in hand, I located the changing rooms , get changed, and headed to the lockers. The lockers are rows of wooden cubicles about 50x50cm wide each. I was gonna put my stuff inside but wait… All the locker doors are open, and there’s no latch or locking mechanism. There’s no way I could leave my valuables there!

So I headed back to the entrance, wearing my swimsuit already, and asked the sarung guy “dude, I can’t lock the lockers, where am I supposed to leave my stuff?” He say, most people just leave their stuff around. It’s gonna be safe. (Yeah, right!!) I just smiled and nodded politely, and took a humiliating trip out to the carpark (it’s quite a distance) in my swimsuit, to put my stuff in the car! At least my purse, camera, and phone will be safe in there.

2.30 pm. After much drama, and a fair bit of sweating (and swearing) in the sun, finally I’m sitting by the water. The water is semi opaque… I can’t say murky but it’s definitely not clear. They’re refilling or recirculating the water, and it created ripples across the pool surface . I can’t see no drain. I mean like, dude, this is supposed to be a competition pool, but you can’t even see the black lines on the bottom of the pool! FAIL!

P1320836

I was gonna start at the shallow end, but then a group of guys (mas2) came into the pool and took over the shallow side… so there’s no choice but to start in the middle or the deep end, near the diving blocks. OMG. By this time, my heart was racing. The fear of drains was lurking at the back of my mind. I lowered myself onto the pool at the deep end. It has a 1.5m ledge on its edges, and I propped my feet there in the water… It felt strange. I haven’t swam in pools, in like, 3 years, since I got seriously tattooed.

I ducked my head underwater, searching for drains along the floor… but it’s so hard to see anything. I can’t even see the floor very clearly, save for the immediate bit under me and about 2m radius around me. It was terrifying, not knowing where the drains were… it’s gotta be somewhere here in the deep end of the pool.

After a few minutes I calmed myself down enough to do a few laps, taking half the pool length and back towards the diving block area, keeping myself close to the pool edges. All the while looking for drains. I could hear my heartbeat while underwater, it was beating really fast. I was scared and excited at the same time, knowing that I was either on the verge of breaking my phobia, or a panic attack, and worst of all I was by myself! I should’ve brought a friend!

At some stage, (I think about 5 laps) the fear got into me and I couldn’t take it anymore. I rushed towards the stairs, climbed out, and sat on one of the post-Chernobyl beach chairs, dripping, heaving and panting.

P1320840

I glanced at my G-Shock watch… I had spent a total of half hours in the mystery water! Success! Zero drain encounter! I smiled, thinking that it wasn’t too bad after all. I could definitely do this again. It was then I felt a sting on my toes…

P1320843

Crap, I must’ve cut myself while climbing out of the pool or something. Okay, that means it’s time to grab my stuff from the car, shower and go home…

P1320839

P1320838The showers are creepy and really old, there’s no bench to put your bag on, and as you can see, the curtain was torn. It’s cold shower only. What do you expect.

P1320833

I took another photo before it’s time to head back. Here’s my verdict:

Pros:
– Close to my house
– Cheap ticket price
– Not crowded

Cons:
– Water quality not so good
– Lockers are not secure
– Shitty changing room

Verdict: You get what you pay for. I might or might not go back there again, it’s undecided…

Swimming pool hopping for the tattoo enthusiast (Part 1: Intro)

Good day, readers, and I apologize for the lack of updates. Life happens, so you know. Today I’m gonna talk about one of my phobias…

drain

Yesss, I am terribly scared of swimming pool drains. This, is how it looks like. Ooh, my heart is racing: (thanks, google)

main-drain-cover-square-shape-250x250
Like most phobias I had no idea on how I developed the fear, because I clearly remembered swimming a lot as a kid. And then I read too much stuff on the internet. About people getting their intestines sucked out into the drains and stuff. Chances are that won’t happen to me (fat people always float in water), but still, a phobia is a phobia…

So when I swim with friends I will only jump in a pool where there’s no visible drains. No olympic sized pools, lazy rivers and the likes.

And then I got sleeve tattoos, which in itself takes about 2 years to complete, which is more reason not to swim, because swimming with freshly done tattoos is a no-no. Well, lucky for me, both of my sleeve tattoos were finally done on last October. It was the perfect time to get back into swimming, and get over that irrational phobia. So it’s time to buy swimsuits…

swimsuit

Yep. This is how I’m gonna roll from now on. As much as I’m proud of my sleeves, I don’t really want to catch unwanted attention (this is Indonesia, folks), and risk exposing my tattoos to the sun too much. I’m a fickle bitch, get used to that. Oh and I also bought some knockoff prescription swimming goggles from Kaskus for Rp. 70k, much cheaper than the Speedo brand (which I will eventually regret, cos it’s not as good! Hehe)

With all that prepared, and with some last-minute courage, I headed to my first destination: The Simprug Pertamina Pool.

Anyways! My lunch is here. I’ll continue in another post, very soon.