Israel During the Trial - A Journal
Jerusalem March 27,1961 DINNER AT THE Cafe Vienna on Jaffa Road, an expensive Yecke or German restaurant frequented by the well-to-do. Steak, french fries, green peas, and while I’m having my coffee, in walks a bearded old Moroccan beggar with his feet wrapped in rags and a checkered scarf around his head. As is generally the custom in the country, no one remarks or tries to stop him as he goes from one customer to another at the espresso bar, holding out his palm, demanding alms without a word. And everybody gives him something until he reaches a man seated at the far left, broad-shouldered, deeply tanned, wearing a suede jacket and a tyrolean hat:
“What do you want?” he shouts in Hebrew. “Get away from me. I have nothing.”
The beggar shuffles off.
“Would you believe it?” my waiter asks me in English. “The one in the hat. I know for a fact. He himself was in a slave labor camp near Lvov for three years.”
“What of it?”
He grimaces, screwing up his nose, and sticking out his lower lip.
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