-Plans for Erev Rosh Hashanah-
That evening after dinner Ari sat down with his eldest grandson Yishai who was the family computer guru. Although he was still in high school he studied computer science at Hebrew University in Jerusalem where he excelled in programming. Ari asked him if there were some kind of encryption programming that could not be broken. Yishai didn’t hesitate when he answered: “c=Ek(m). It’s a Quantum cryptography perfect security system that uses an encryption algorithm where the ciphertext provides no information about the plaintext without the key which is always employs OTP.”
Ari laughed and said, “I won’t try your patience by asking you to explain that to me, but I will ask if you can create such a program to encrypt Hebrew text.”
“Of course,” said Yishai, “but you can get secure encryption software from the internet.”
“I would prefer that you write a program that is not available to others,” said Ari. “You got secrets, Saba,” asked Yishai. Ari chuckled and said, “I could tell you but then I’d have to kill you and your grandmother would never forgive me. How long will it take you to finish?”
“Oh I can knock it out over the weekend,” said Yishai. Ari raised his forefinger, “That will be fine but I don’t want this to distract you from your studies.”
“This is my study,” he replied. Ari embraced his grandson and said, “Not a word to anyone, this is our secret.”
The boy laughed, “Of course, I wouldn’t want Savta pissed off with you.”
The next morning on his way to work, Ari called Jean Levy on his latest burn phone and left a message. That evening Jean returned the call, “Ari do you have more news for our young friend?”
“I do,” he said, “But the reason I called was to impose upon you to persuade the Baron and his lovely family to celebrate Rosh Hashanah in Jerusalem. We’re having an informal fund raiser for the museum on afternoon of Erev Rosh Hashanah and we’ll need all the contributors we can gather. I have a gift for Lady Ariane that you will appreciate.”
“I can’t make any promises,” said Levy, “But I expect that they’ll be happy to attend.”
“Well do what you can and as always we will be in your debt,” said Ari, “Blessings on you my friend and we hope to see you soon.”
“Good bye for now and Blessings on you as well,” said Jean.
Once more Jean Levy did his magic and when word got out that the Baron’s family would be making an appearance, the fund raising event had to be moved from the inner courtyard of the Rockefeller Archeological Museum, to the art garden of the Israeli Museum to accommodate the crowd of nearly one thousand who wished to attend. Ari was glad that this fundraiser was scheduled for the early afternoon because he hated evening formal wear. He had a tuxedo but felt like a fool whenever he had to wear it. He hated wearing a necktie of any kind but in concession to the occasion he put on the only one he owned a broad black silk thing hand painted with a miniature copy of Marc Chagall’s The Joy of Color. He fumbled a bit before he remembered how to tie a full Windsor knot, then slipped two small flash drives into the pocket of his sports coat and walked the short distance through the parks to the Art Garden.
There had been a slight drizzle earlier that morning but the overcast sky had broken up into scattered clouds and now Jerusalem was perfect. With his fingers wrapped around the flash drives, he took his time and enjoyed the day. He arrived just as the caterers were laying out the buffets. Kosher food on the left with a more international spread across the garden on the right, there was more than enough food to provide for the guests. Wait staff mingled with the growing crowd dispensing champagne and wine while bartenders poured whiskey and made mixed drinks for those who preferred more potent libations. Ari shook hands and exchanged air kisses with the guests and finally made his way to the closest bar to order a single malt scotch. It was a twelve year old Glenlivet which was acceptable but hardly comparable to the rarified spirits that Jean Levy served at his parties. He was just about to turn away from the bar and return to the crowd when he felt a soft bump against his right shoulder and heard his old friend say, “Toss that back and get a fresh glass.”
They embraced and after he quickly finished off the Glenlivet, Jean poured two fingers of extraordinary whiskey from his silver flask into a fresh glass. “Shanah Tovah Umetukah, (A good and sweet year),” said Jean as he raised his glass. “L'shanah tovah tikatevu (May you be inscribed for a good year)”, replied Ari. They each took and savored a sip and then Ari asked, “When will they arrive?”
“They’re already here,” said Jean, “Touring the new exhibits. Ariane showed me her gift from Mike. I’m jealous.”
“Where is our friend,” asked Ari. “I expect he’s either in Texas or somewhere in Belize,” Levy replied, and then he gestured to the archway of the museum, “Ahhh, there they are.”
Ari turned see the Baron and his family enter the art garden. They appeared as if they were stepping out of a magazine layout, the perfect picture of any other well to do upper middle class family: an attractive husband and wife with four equally attractive daughters and a handsome son-in-law. They were accompanied by a troupe of plain clothes bodyguards who kept a discrete distance and blended into the crowd. Jean introduced Ari to the Baron and the Lady Ariane and Ari commented on the silver scroll tube on the silver chain that she wore over her shoulder, “An interesting piece.”
“It has an interesting story,” said Ariane, “One that touches on your work. In fact I wore it today so we could give it to you.”
“Jean told me that it is Michael’s gift to your family so I suspect that it comes from Lebanon,” he said and as he took her hand in his, “But may I suggest that we use it for its intended purpose just once more.”
Ariane took the two small flash drives from Ari as he said, “These are my gift to you. The one with the red label is the key. After you’ve left Israel, give them to Jean and he will reveal the message you hold in your hand.”
Ariane laughed and said, “An invitation from Jean Levy is almost always an adventure,” then she signaled her female bodyguard and they left the party to go to the powder room.
For any who may be interested, here's an index of previous posts of PoB Discovery. Hope you enjoy: