|If you are about
to embark on a journey to Israel, prepare for an encounter
with a people whose psychology is similar to no
other! In this section, we will attempt to prepare you for
some of the psychological and cultural differences you
will meet. The differences will be felt wherever you
go, on the street, on the roads, waiting in lines, buying
in shops and visiting Israeli's homes. Be prepared!
the Roads: It would be one thing to take your own life in your
hands. It's quite another when your life is in others hands.
Israelis are particularly impatient when driving.
||They break the speed
limit, overtake on bends, honk unnecessarily, shout at
when they think the standard of
your driving is below that of fomula 1, never give way and
take risks that endanger those around them. Good Luck!
In Line: Although there may
only be 3 people ahead of you in
the line, 5 others have reserved their place, and are doing
the rest of their shopping until their turn comes! In the
past, Israelis were infamous for not waiting their turn, but
this aspect of their behavior has improved dramatically of
average Israeli tends to shout a lot more than your average
Englishman! Yet, this Israeli pastime should not be
For the most part, it's just their
normal way of expressing themselves. Even everyday
communication involves the raising of voices. In England or
you may be spoken to politely, but then get a knife in the
back! Here, the bark is certainly worse than the bite! The
streets are extremely safe, even for women at night, so take
the loud tone with a pinch of salt!
Eternal Optimists: Nothing seems to bother the Israeli
too much. "ye-hi-eh beseder", everything will work out, is the national slogan, and the people really do believe it!
The Shops: You won't believe it, but Israelis even
bargain when go to the bank manager to get their mortgage
arranged! This doesn't mean that you have to bargain in
every store, but it's certainly worth a go in all but the
major department stores. Security checks at the
entrance to stores are a part of life here. Being frisked by
an armed security guard before entering any shopping mall is
everyday routine. Don't be alarmed!
Sense: Israelis dress casually. You will be hard pressed to
find a suit and tie here, even in The Prime Minister's office.
However, oddly enough, even on hot summer days, it is not considered
polite for men to take off their shirts, and is only seen among
Israelis are addicted to news. Every hour on the hour, they will,
if possible, turn on the radio and listen to the latest bulletin.
Strange then that Israel has no 24 hour television news station.
free to eat on the streets!