December 20, 2015, Israel
Random shot, Moshe in the Old City of Jerusalem looking out for the Tour and Train group.
We all speak about different levels of alertness. No one can be on guard 24 hours per day, seven days per week. Even soldiers need to take shifts. But when we are in areas known for potential danger, when are in public places, we need to keep out eyes open.
Unlike other creatures we are not terribly fast, we cannot turn out necks around, we cannot fly, and we cannot jump or climb trees. So we must use what we have, we must keep our eyes open and be very aware. We must use our intelligence to scan the environment and gather information.
Some people are heavy, some have bad knees, and some walk with canes. They will not be able to run quickly. And yet the mind is sharp and we must learn to be aware, to pick up on subtle clues.
By chance I noticed a photo of myself, taken during the recent Tour and Train session. At the time the situation in Israel was a little precarious. We even had our doubts about bringing the group to the Old City of Jerusalem. In the end we decided the situation was under control.
I recall that during the entire trip I was constantly watching...
A. Our group
B. The location and number of Israeli police, military and other security guards
C. Suspicious behavior of certain elements of the population.
Looking at this random photo of myself I notice several points.
1. My eyes are focused like an animal looking for prey.
2. My back is to a safe zone with no space for anyone to get behind me.
3. Behind me is a member of our group, so no suspicious people are near me or behind my back.
4. My hands are in a position where they can rapidly move into an offensive or defensive position.
5. I am balanced yet not in an obvious combative position.
This one snapshot captures what I try to teach our students; constant awareness, scanning of the environment, awareness of potential harm and of potential help (paying attention to police, military and security guards, we must know where they are), keeping all members of your group within eyesight and within speaking distance, and watching your back at all times.