I have decided that Israeli’s – Bless Them – are like black coffee to me. Black coffee is just too strong for me, I have to add something: cappuccino, hot chocolate, flavored creamer, something to enjoy the jolt. Israeli’s are strong like black coffee. I need them to add alittle something: humor, charm, a lighter moment, something to enjoy their jolt.
I admire their tenacity. They are always at 120 mph while Americans are going the legal 55 mph and think that is fast!
So on my first full day in Jerusalem when I met “black coffee with cappuccino” I was putty in her hands. On the way to the Wailing Wall we encountered an Israeli version of a Farmer’s Market. One of the booths was a woman, Chana, who designed clothes. She commented on my clothes, I commented on her clothes, and off to the races of a wonderful relationship we went.
Except that her clothes really weren’t designed for me. Chana was the best salesperson you will ever meet so the fact that her clothes and me were not a fit really never came up. Enthusiastic and totally centered on her target, which was me. No matter what objection I brought up, she ignored or overcame it.
I didn’t want to take off my clothes to try on an outfit I knew I would l never buy. Somehow, there I was in this little make shift dressing room, practically visible to the walking world, trying on this outfit.
If you have met me in person, you know you have almost never seen me wearing a print. There I was in a print, exclaiming my undying love for solids. Somehow Chana did not hear.
She simply pointed out that she was sure I had a pair of shoes in one of the colors in the print.
I tried every objection,
I don’t know where I will ever wear it
I can’t fit any more in my suitcase
I don’t have that much cash on me
To no avail.
Chana, in her consistent, focused way, marched through every objection.
True, she was the owner and cared more than someone hired for the day.
Nothing I said deterred her. She just kept marching on, offering an incentive, a challah for the Sabbath, a discount for two purchases.
I finally buckled. She had more ways to get me to say YES than I had to say NO.
Chana was like strong coffee with a shot of hot cocoa. She knew what she wanted, to close a sale. She made the process fun along the way, yet she kept her focus on her goal.
Perhaps in America we have too much sugar in our coffee style.