ever driven on the Mount of Olives? There are cars parked on both sides of the
road, occasionally in two rows. In the narrow gap between them you can see
making their way all kinds of vehicles such as large trucks, donkeys and most
of all tourist buses. At the same time you see schoolchildren and veiled Muslim
women crossing the street, old gentlemen standing around and observing the
hassle. There…a young man balancing his way through the traffic with a box full
of eggs. His sudden appearance in front of my car window gave me a real
hundred meters you see a sign showing a way to one of the many churches. That’s
the place where the tourist groups get out and try to cross the street to the
other side. While driving a car I do not want to succumb to the mentality of –
“If you push hard, you come through!” That’s why I stop decently in
front of a crosswalk. There, a colorful group of Indian women stand, looking
around frighteningly, while the bolder pilgrims already await them on the other
side. They are probably rushing to the Russian Ascension Church, because
Auguste Victoria Ascension Church is already happily behind me and Pater Noster
still a bit ahead of me. “Bum”! Someone hit the back of my car. How
stupid of me to stop in front of a pedestrian crossing …
in a similar situation, a young man from Sri Lanka bumped into my car. He came
to Jerusalem looking for work and made a hole in its rear instead. But luckily
only with a screw that temporarily held his license plate in place. Now I’m
confused and scared. Even though on the Mount of Olives it was only the bumper.
Thank God I sent a quick prayer to Heaven before the ride: “Lord, help get
through the Mount of Olives!”
On Sunday I
have to visit the center of Jerusalem. It is the beginning of the week and the
traffic is the worst. That’s the reason why I turn on the smart Israeli
navigation app “Waze”. Waze is successful in avoiding traffic jams.
It leads me through the narrow streets of an ultra-orthodox neighborhood. Also
here a driver can be surprised by a small child taking his siblings to
preschool: “Just do not run over anyone and at the same time don’t let
anybody bump into you …!” Suddenly I hear a voice coming from the
navigator: “Turn left into ‘For He is good ‘!” Yes! I will! I am relieved!
And I am glad that I can live and drive in Jerusalem!