web analytics
February 27, 2015 / 8 Adar , 5775
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post


Home » Sections » Aliyah »

Tremping Rules of the Road

hitchhiking haredim

Photo Credit: Nati Shohat /Flash90

One of the more interesting phenomena in Israel is the hitchhiking culture, called “tremping” locally. If you’ve ever seen the mobs of Israelis waiting at bus stops near the entrance to a city, some with their index fingers pointed down (instead of thumbs up), they’re requesting that, out of the goodness of your heart, would you please stop so I can possibly catch a ride with you?

Typically, this is how it works: a driver stops at a trempiada (a local gathering place to catch a tremp), rolls down the window and calls out his destination. Then, he or she has to repeat it several times before the throng of hopefuls hears it clearly, at which point anyone not interested in the ride will repeat the location for the benefit of other trempers. Anyone who wants the ride will then jostle their way through the crowd to reach the car before it zips away. The passengers will squeeze in to the allowable maximum in the car, and the driver will then continue on to his or her destination.

So once you have a car full of strangers, what is the etiquette? Are they a captive audience? Should they sit in silence for the next 45 minutes? What about our “always reachable” society of smartphones and SMS? There are many schools of thought to exactly how both the drivers and passengers should behave. Sure I’m doing people a favor, but that doesn’t mean I have to by a tyrant. That being said, here are some rules for tremping etiquette:

  • My kids leave my back seat a shambles regularly. Give me a minute to throw it in the trunk so I don’t have to be embarrassed by it.
  • I’m not talking to you because my conversational Hebrew is lousy. Unless you say something in English, then I’m playing Jewish Geography with you.
  • Please do not smoke, fart, or otherwise stink up my car worse than it is (see “shambles”).
  • I might not share what I’m eating, because it might be the first thing I’ve eaten all day. You can eat as long as you don’t cook anything in the back seat, and you take your waste with you.
  • If you need to call someone to tell them you just got into a tremp, so that, let’s say, I don’t abduct you, that’s fine. You can SMS the rest of your conversation to your girlfriend.
  • If you need to make a work call, call someone to pick up your kids, or other life-important call, I will be accommodating.
  • If you jump in ahead of a soldier in uniform, I will kick you out. I might even be polite about it. Depends if I’ve eaten.
  • If you shove ahead of someone who looks old enough to be your grandparent, I will kick you out. I will not be polite about it.
  • I might lower my music. I might continue to sing along. Depends on my mood. You’re welcome to join me if you know the words. If you can harmonize, all the better. If you have better music, I have a Bluetooth device. If you ask me to stop, I will sing louder and off-key.
  • If you need to get out !here! then tell me 50 meters (150 feet) before we get !here!
  • Bus stops are better egress points than !here! Traffic circles are not, but at least I won’t stop in the middle of one to let you out.
  • Egress is יציאה in Hebrew.
  • If you try to sell me something, you will immediately egress. I probably won’t slow down.
  • Just because I drive past a full trempiada doesn’t mean I don’t care. It means either I’m late, you can’t see the packages in the backseat, or I’m only going very locally. I will stop twice next time.
  • I am doing this to pay it forward, so my children will get rides from your parent/spouse/sibling. This is karma.
  • There is no Hebrew word for karma.
  • If I’m a single guy in the car and you don’t want to get in, that’s fine. If you want to get in the back seat, that’s fine. I won’t talk to you anyway, because it’s creepy. Unless you look like you might be one of my kids’ ages and I’m heading back to my yishuv (town). Then I’ll only try to identify myself as such, so it is less creepy.
  • Pull down your skirt. I tell my daughters this, now I’m tellin’ you.
  • If I pick up both boys and girls, there shall be no hitting on one another.
  • If I pick up multiple boys, there shall be no hitting one another.
  • Please keep hands and head inside the moving vehicle at all times.
  • I will accommodate the climate control from my handy-dandy A/C panel. Please do not open your window in the back. They are low-tech and you will forget to roll them up.
  • Don’t tip the driver. Thank them. Then we both get points for being nice gosh-darnit people.

And please remember to always look safe. If you look like someone they wouldn’t invite into their home, they won’t invite you into their car.

About the Author: Marc Gottlieb is the webmaster for JewishPress.com. Marc has been crafting end-to-end online solutions for all sizes and types of businesses since 1995. You can see more samples of his work at http://www.marcgottlieb.com.   He made aliyah in 2006 with his wife and four children. They live in Gush Etzion with two cats and a hamster.   Marc's political comments are entirely his own and do not reflect the opinions of JewishPress.com.  


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

2 Responses to “Tremping Rules of the Road”

  1. Moishe Pupik says:

    What do you do when the person gets in the car, and you realize they have terrible B.O.?

  2. Moshe Pupik asks a good question. If one has BO, what is the proper way to open the windows so that you don't offend the person with the BO? The best way would be to open the window next to them first, and then open one in the front a little more so the BO is sucked directly out. But how to do so without offending the person?

    If I was traveling through Israel, I'd be tempted to tremp across the country just to talk with the natives. That would make the trip for me.

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Said Arikat, al-Quds Washington, D.C. reporter. Jan. 29, 2015
Said Says (Falsely): ‘Israel flooding Gaza with Waste Water’
Latest Sections Stories
South-Florida-logo

Jews, wake up! Stop educating the world and start educating yourselves.

Hebrew Academy students learn the ABC’s of safety during Hebrew Academy’s recent Safety Kid Program.

The lessons conform to the sensitivities and needs of the Orthodox community…

Women learn in honor of first yahrzeit of Rebbetzin Chasia Kudan, a”h.

The program took on special significance as it marked not only the first anniversary of Rebbetzin Kudan’s levayah but also the 27th yahrzeit of Rebbetzin Chaya Mushka Schneerson, a”h.

It captures the love of the Jewish soul as only Shlomo Hamelech could portray it – and as only Rabbi Miller could explain it.

Erudite and academic, drawing from ancient and modern sources, the book can be discussed at the Shabbos table as well as in kollel.

I’m here to sit next to you and help you through this Purim with three almost-too-easy mishloach manot ideas, all made with cost-conscious paper bags.

Kids want to be like their friends, and they want to give and get “normal” mishloach manos stocked with store-bought treats.

Whenever he did anything loving for me, I made a big deal about it.

“OMG, it’s so cute, you’re so cute, everything is so cute.”

A program that started with a handful of volunteers has grown exponentially to include students from a wider array of backgrounds.

Tutor. Counselor. The doctor too,
Sometimes it’s hard to keep up with you.

Recently, due to age and wear, programming and NCSY events were moved into portable units outside the youth building.

More Articles from Marc Gottlieb

It is up to our government to ensure that their sacrifices were not made for short-term gains.

Ceasefire

Deja Vu. We will start this ceasefire by ignoring the rockets that continue to fall around us, until once again, we can’t ignore them any longer.

If you look like someone they wouldn’t invite into their home, they won’t invite you into their car.

In the online world of split-second decision making, having the right theme for your website may mean the difference between engaging a customer or losing the sale.

Make your website festive for the holidays with some simple graphic enhancements.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/tremping-rules-of-the-road/2014/02/19/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: