Tuesday is my day in Jerusalem.
I usually see four to five clients on Tuesdays, but due to some cancellations and the fact that my nails needed a real professional manicure, I decided to make an appointment at the salon I have been going to for years at the Plaza Hotel on King George Street in the center of the city.
Getting a manicure, for me, is part of my personal I AM A CAR (see below) initiative.
So there I was innocently watching the manicurist try to rebuild my damaged nails, placing the first coat of polish on, when we suddenly hear the siren. Not sure what it was at first, we both hesitated.
Then, she takes off, running down the hall.
I decide I should join her, only after my phone rings and ELY is crying to me on the other end. She is on her way home from school and has just gotten off the bus at the central bus station and doesn't know what to do. She is crying - hysterically! I walk calmly towards the bomb shelter of the hotel, talking ELY through her tears of what to do, "Get to a wall, get down low, put your hands over your head, take deep breaths, you're going to be okay. Are people starting to move around you?" I just kept talking to her. Poor thing was so scared.
I have a theory.
My father taught me that terrorism is exactly that. From the word, terror. Their goal is to instill terror. Their goal is to make you so afraid that you don't move or exist or live. And if you do that, then they win.
I've taken my father's words and changed them a little. I like to look at the terrorists as big bad bullies. They are nothing but bullies!
Why do people bully? Usually because they are jealous of the other person. Or because they want something you want. Or because they feel bad about themselves. Or because they were never loved and are looking for attention.
We can't let the bullies know they are bothering us. We can't be dumb, of course. We can't walk into their arms and ask them to bully us. But we can chose not to let them bother us. We can even laugh at them.
So this is the message I give to ELY, as I am walking back down the hall to the salon and she is getting back on a bus to go home. Don't let the bullies win. Yes, that was VERY scarey. But don't let them bully you. Go have fun with your friends. Laugh. Tell jokes. Live.
And I went back to having my nails done. Albeit with a very shakey manicurist!
That's reality. We keep going. We don't let the bullies stop us from living -
Not even for a manicure!!