IDF Reservist-Talking to the Printer while shots are fired…

Many years ago I was stationed in one of the Palestinian refugee camps. At work I had a single project that was not closed off, It was a poster that was scheduled to be printed in two weeks for an exhibition. I wasn’t worried as I had already spoken to my commanders about the few days I”ll be needing to run to my office in the middle of my reserve duty to make a few final changes and send the file to the printer.

I start my reserve duty and  after two weeks as planned I left the unit and head to my office. Mobile phones were part of our lives, but the internet was just getting started and there was no way I could send such a huge file (back then) via a modem from my desktop computer. I had received the changes in the design from the client via my fax and spent the 2 days making the changes, so far all is normal and going as expected.

End of day two I bring the file to the printer with the instructions on the printing and go back to the reserves. Plan for the printing is in a few days, they will send the “hetek shemesh” (a preview) to the client for confirmation. 

Two days later I get a call from my client that they have to make a change….oops.

The printer is not going to make the change, they don’t touch the files sent as it makes them responsible for the printing, Yet I could not leave my present situation and given the date of the exhibition the change has to be done immediately so that there will be time for the printing. Its a simple change, I call the press and ask them if they would do it. And though I’ve known them for over 10 years, they politely reminded me that they can’t.

At that point in the background there was the sound of automatic weapons being fired. It seems that a molotov cocktail was thrown at our little outpost and Yossi opened up on the two guys who threw it. Soon Michael joined in, so there was a bit of background noise. I looked up at them (it was getting a bit hard to hold a conversation) and Yossi threw me a glance that I could finish on the phone, that everything was under control, it wasn’t that serious.

Well the printer with whom I was talking to, knew what gunfire sounded like and asked where I was. I mentioned the place (I knew where he was during his own service and knew he would recognize the name and what it meant). His reaction was pretty much what I expected out of an Israeli, he told me to stay safe and that he’ll take care of the change, be in touch with the client, and get the printing done in time.

I closed the phone, knowing that the printing job was in good hands, walked over to Yossi and Michael to see what all the fuss was about.  🙂

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