For no reason at all, her thoughts wonder to 1991. The gulf war. She remembers cardboard boxes with gas masks inside them, arranged in a neat line at the corner of her Tal Aviv studio. She remembers how Isaac Stern was playing with the Israeli Philharmonic when suddenly the sirens went on. The orchestra cleared the stage while the audience remained sitting in their seats. Some wore their gas masks while other did not. Everyone were confused and frightened. But Mr. Stern stayed on the stage. He didn't even wait for the sirens to turn off. He took his violin and started to play. It was a gesture of an artist, admiring his audience as much as they admired him. This was the kind of spirit, not found anywhere else in the world, that kept her going in this country where she was always a misfit.
In 1961, 30 years before Saddam Hussein was launching Scud missiles on Tel Aviv, two women that she did not imagine at that time, how their life will soon be so entangled with hers, were sitting in a fashionable cafe in New York.
"I am leaving New York", said Bethsabee, "I am moving to Tel Aviv".
Martha was surprised. " Tel Aviv? Why on earth would you want to live there?"
"I don't have much choice, I'm afraid", Bethsabee replied, "I was assigned by my family to be the custodian of our interests in the holy land. Besides, It is not that bad. You've been there. You know it is an existing place".
"But what are you going to do there?"
"I'm not sure yet. Maybe I'll start my own dance company..."