• “The warm winter day brought out the geckos to bathe in the sun, and the world looked pristine, as if a team of cherubim had polished the hewn stone on the houses and the red and blue anemones carpeting the dells. Past Mount Scopus, pinkish-brown mountains fringed the Judean desert. To the southeast, the tip of the Dead Sea, set deep in a valley, shimmered gray like Bathsheba's looking glass.”

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