READ THIS: This Is What A School Bus Driver In The Catskills Wrote About Driving Jewish Campers

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The following (unedited text) was posted on a local Facebook page in Sullivan County:

I’m a school bus driver in Sullivan County. I did my first Jewish camp trip today.

Three years ago I moved here and I wondered how so many people can hate our summer visitors.

I guess no matter who the group is… if you put 300,000 people in any small community, it’s going to create havoc. After three summers. I can see how people get frustrated. I’ve been frustrated too.

Then today happened and I felt the need to share this… as I’ve already said… today was my first trip.

I had a bus full of 14 year old boys from one camp and I could not have asked for a better behaved, polite and grateful group of boys. Each one thanked me as they got on my bus and again as they got off. I asked them all not to leave a mess and there was not one thing left on my bus. Not ONE thing!!

I admit I don’t much of their culture. But I read what people post about them and all their bad behavior. I guess if I came each summer to a community that makes it clear that I wasn’t welcome, I wouldn’t try too hard to be nice either.

I’m sure there are always going to be bad apples in every group…. but there were 99 VERY well behaved, polite and grateful boys on our busses today and THAT doesn’t happen by accident. My hat is off to the parents raising these boys.

(YWN World Headquarters – NYC)




27 COMMENTS

  1. Kol hakavod to these boys, and kol hakavod to YWN for posting. We much prefer this to the lashon hara that is frequently posted here. (No, I’m not referring to the letter written by Zvi Gluck. That was important).

  2. It’s good to see a true Kiddush Hashem.
    It would be great to bring this issue to the attention of all parents, camps, and campers in the area for the summer.

  3. What a kiddush Hashem! Honestly brings tears to my eyes how powerful our actions are and how much of an impact we all can make DAILY and EVERYWHERE.

  4. The vast majority of frum kids are incredibly well-behaved compared to their peer groups. Where there are occasional problems, its typically in a new set of circumstances or new social encounter they have not previously dealt with and in those cases, its the parents who have not provided them with behavioral guidance. I recall one year complaints about frum kids leaving lots of trash in a park on a chol hamoed visit and later it turned out that the trash was neatly piled in the area where in prior years, the park had provided trash containers. In the interim year, the park service had removed all their trash cans in a questionable policy of reducing costs and litter by encouraging everyone to take their trash home with them but for non-regular park visitors, it was new. Anyway, kol hakovod to these kids, their parents and the counselors at this camp.

  5. Wow, I was already dreading to read this, but it turns out to be a Kiddush Hashem B”H. Even Gadolhadorah’s comments are positive (for once). Amazing on both counts 😀

  6. I am a grandfather, but when I was raising my children I would ask them if they thanked the bus driver when they got on and off the bus. I still ocasionally ask my grandchildren the question.

  7. So proud of our children, of our Yeshivah and home chinuch and of YWN for posting. Like poster levi365348 above posted, I too was dreading to read this but I’m gratetful that the 14 year old group gave the Ribono Shel Olam more to be proud of.

  8. This is nice. But let us remember that Kiddush Hashem does not mean that we have to impress non Jews. It’s not out job to get them to validate us.

    When they hate us they are merely being mekayim the halocho.

    How they view us and behave towards us is not in our hands.

  9. Searchin 345/Levi465….both of you are a mind readers….I struggled to find some negative angle to this story but even I couldn’t find a way to bash these kids. Perhaps we should condemn the bus driver for sharing such positive information without the consent of the parents…..stay tuned.

  10. Gadol: No trash cans where there used to be is no excuse for leaving a trash ‘neatly piled’. Maybe you didn’t mean it that way but it sounds like you are saying that it is ok to do this…

  11. @ hymish, Bubby B, Alizgitt, and levi365248 – This piece is indeed beautiful, refreshing, comforting, validating, and so much more. And besides being pleased with it having been posted, I am certain, as we probably all are, that this is more the rule than it is the exception. Such behavior is very helpful and should most definitely be expected of all of us.
    It is, however, quite unlikely that this constitutes a kiddush HaShem. IF the young Bnei Milachim acted as they did out of a sense, great or small, that HaShem demands such behavior from us, then it would have been a great kiddush HaShem. Not because of the ultimate reaction of the driver, but because of the passage and counselors and staff. To see Yidden be in a situation where unTorahlike behavior is tempting, and they conquer their own yetzer ha’ras and do what is expected of them by HaShem, a great kiddush HaShem has taken place. To “behave” because we are in public, because we don’t want the non-Jewish driver, or our neighbors to be upset with us, or because it will be better for us as a camp, as residents, or whatever, is NOT a kiddush HaShem. It’s good behavior. It’s prudent behavior. It’s politically correct. But it’s not kiddush HaShem.
    But again, this piece is indeed beautiful, refreshing, comforting, validating, and so much more. Thank you YWN for posting. Perhaps more such articles will help sensitize us to the way things should be. A much more positive outcome than the insensitivity that is cultivated through reading about machlokes, politics, etc.

  12. That’s what our camp is all about. Kudos to the best campers in the world camp Toras Chaim Tashbar in Liberty NY. That was our boys on a trip yesterday.

  13. Warren Peace: The National Park Service (and many state park agencies) have adopted a policy of removing trash cans from most parks and asking visitors to take their trash home with them. The major exception are parks which have camping areas etc. I’m skeptical of the wisdom of this policy since many visitors, as I noted, simply pile their trash where the cans used to be and don’t want to bother with taking their trash home.