Wheelies in Jeddah

By | February 5, 2012

One of amazing things that is common-place in the middle east is seeing people driving like crazy people. And, I don’t mean the crazy drivers like you see in America or England. In the US or the UK, we call someone driving 15 miles/hr faster than anyone else, driving on the shoulder, or flashing their lights a “crazy driver”. We see all that here, but that’s just the normal way to get around town.

There’s some real craziness that goes on here. This past weekend, for instance, we were driving down Thalia street in Jeddah and saw a group of guys on motorcycles. Doing wheelies, standing wheelies, 90 degree standing wheelies, in traffic… without helmets. And, as I told my friends about this the other night, pretty much all of them had stories of seeing similarly dangerous activities on the streets of Jeddah.

I’m not going to get on my high horse about helmets or the safety of other people on the road. Obviously, I don’t support any of it, and am terrified and horrified that anyone would even consider getting involved. Which lead me to a serious question: why would anyone do that?

So, I did a bit of youtube research to try to better understand. Here are a few of the youtube videos I could find of the types of driving we hear about  – and occasionally witness – in Saudi:

Road surfing:

More surfing:



MIA – Bad Girls 
I even found a post by American Bedu posted today on a smilar topic. The video in her post is purportedly from Morocco, but definitely glorifies Arab drifting, as well:

I wouldn’t like to speculate what makes young Saudi men want to get involved in this activity here, but I’d love to know what you think. Why would anyone do this?