You were right

From the first steps out of the airplane To the stunning scenery on route 6

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You were right about not being able to recognize the road because every time I look, a new building is there, and then a few, and then a sign announcing the new city pops up when I turn around to look out the other window


You were right, the chutzpa here is out of control The taxi driver argued with me about how to spell and pronounce my own last name and then insisted that I use his cell phone to make sure he dropped me off at the right place even though I was sure he did

And when the bus driver starts to scream and honk at the car in front of him and gets a hand sign with all the fingers pinched that says "regaaaa" as a response, I feel like I'm back at home and my siblings are having a petty fight. Oh wait, I am.

You were right,

As cliché as it sounds, this land is home and every step I take is me reclaiming it

And no matter the background, words like Tzadik, Mitzva and Shabbat Shalom can be heard left and right Because Judaism is not only a religion or a culture, it's an intrinsic identity

You were right,

About people celebrating your aliya like a huge simcha and screaming Mazal Tov with excitement

You were also right,

About people who have no patience and scream at you Savlanut giveret (patience, lady)!

And about having to drink water and wear sunglasses like we're all camels that work in security

You were right,

About there being opportunities galore for anything you’ve ever dreamed of. Of course, you’ll have give up your Saturday night parties and Sunday fundays and replace them with alive and blasting Thursday nights in the city and a strong dose of quality time on long summery Shabbat afternoons.

You were right,

It's so hard to choose where to eat or which concert to attend because there are so many options

And of course, I end up eating out at Ben Yehuda listening to 3 different artists around me and then joining an impromptu Hachnasat Sefer Tora

I cry tears of overwhelming joy and gratitude But instead of just murmuring thanks in my heart, I walk to the Kotel and stand next to a chayelet pouring her heart out on a Sefer Tehilim

And you were right,

When the person next to me is holding on to the holy stones and sobbing, all I can think of is "Gd, whatever she's praying for, please give her. And bless her, and him, and them, and us all".
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