Thursday, July 10, 2008:
We arrived at Ben Gurion airport around 7:30 a.m. with 217 other olim chadashim
and were welcomed home by approx. 500 guests (including politicians and IDF soldiers) and the 80 or so olim who had arrived from other countries that morning!
The Pomerantz and Aaron Families (and probably others – its all a blur!) came to greet us with a sign welcoming us to Ma’aleh Adumim. Somehow the camera lens picked up the tears in my eyes and displayed for you exactly what I saw!
It was a very emotional experience that words just can’t describe.
Nefesh B’Nefesh (NBN) had a nice welcoming ceremony with food,
and then I was whisked upstairs to take care of paperwork while Michael and Yisrael went to retrieve our luggage.
It took a long time for them to find us a large enough taxi to transport us and our stuff home,
so at about 1:30 p.m. we caved in and accepted THREE taxis to do the job (all paid by the government via our taxes).
More Airport photos…
Jacob Richman of Ma’aleh Adumim took 286 photos of this exciting event – thank you Jacob! Here are a few he took for us:
Michael was loaded down with almost all the carry-on luggage, Yisrael was looking for his friend Louis Morris who was moving to Efrat, and I was taking photos of the crowd.
And NBN published a live online webcast of our arrival. We’ve asked for them to provide a way for us to download and save it for Yisrael and will let you know if/when they make that available.
Yisrael slept through most of the 40 minute taxi ride. Let me tell you about this taxi ride… in January it took us about an hour to drive to Ma’aleh Adumim from the airport – this guy was flying! If you like wild amusement park rides, you must try this out (personally, I get sick on those rides). This driver wasn’t happy as we left the airport because I had complained that I felt they should put 4 boxes on his roof (he had room for them) instead of adding a third cab to the fare. So I decided I better “make nice” if I wanted to get home alive! I asked a few friendly questions about his family to which he responded in a friendly manner. Then I asked what we were driving past – BIG MISTAKE! He decided to play tour guide while he was traveling at high speed around sharp curves, crossing the lines and yelling at other drivers as they blew their horns at him! It certainly woke me up and gave me an opportunity to talk to God upon entering His Holy Land!
I relaxed as I saw the park at our corner
and then the house
Upon arrival at our new home, Sanne Levy – our incredibly kind landlady – had cold drinks and snacks waiting for us. She also provided temporary furnishings: table and 6 chairs, love seat, beds and mattresses, cooler with ice packs and she even stocked the kitchen and bathroom with the basic necessities! We truly felt welcomed!
Yisrael was so tired from staying up the entire flight that he actually passed up a glass of Coca Cola (something I don’t buy, and he loves), and asked where he could sleep!
More photos of our new home.
Here’s my current favorite (used for the banner of this blog).