Friday, August 14, 2009

A Constant Fear

Last night, Israeli news showed terrible traffic jams in the Tel Aviv, Lod, Beit Shemesh, Shoresh areas. At first the authorities refused to elaborate why, but we all know that when there's a search like that there can be two reasons.
  1. There was warning of a planned terror attack, and the security forces are looking for the vehicle with the Arab terrorists.
  2. An Israeli, could be soldier or anyone, was kidnapped in a vehicle.

In both possible scenarios, the vehicle would have Israeli license plates and the driver would be dressed to look like a Jew. Considering all the cars, it's like a massive search for a needle in a haystack.

The Arab news site Ma'an gleefully reported about the search for an Israeli soldier.

After systematic follow-ups, thank G-d for cellphones, it was decided that all soldiers on leave were accounted for. The search was called off.

We don't have a car, and "tremping*" supplements public transportation. In theory, I'd love to be able to travel solely by public transportation, but our bus service is severely limited. If a ride comes in the right direction, I get in. A couple of months ago, I had to get to my cousin's house in Hod Hasharon and giving myself lots of time I decided to travel by bus, three buses. It took me over two hours. This past week I had to get there again and "tremped." In less than an hour after leaving my house, after taking four rides, I was at the closest junction, Tzomet Yarkon, from where she picked me up, saving me the bus ride and walk. By car, door to door, it's no more than 40-45 minutes depending on the driver in regular traffic.

Yes, there's an art to "tremping," trying to "read" the car, driver and passengers to figure out if it's a good risk getting into a stranger's car. And, of course, sometimes the driver is a good friend who just ends up being the car to stop and give the ride. That's what happened on my way home. My cousin dropped me off in Ariel, near the College. Within a couple of minutes a car stopped and someone got out, making room in the front seat. The driver was a neighbor and very glad to give me the ride. She took me straight to my door.

Thank G-d

The roads are dangerous enough considering all the traffic accidents, and getting into the "wrong car" is an added risk.

*tremping=hitchhiking

No comments: