In first person… Touching down began best day of my life

The engines roared with power and the wheels of the El Al 747 screeched as they kissed the tarmac of the Ben-Gurion International Airport. As the jumbo jet touched down on Israeli soil, the passenger cabin was filled with another roar; one of cheering and excitement of being in the Promised Land. It was early Monday morning, June 10, 1988.

Even though it was only 4 a.m., the arriving passengers were met with smiling faces and pleasant greetings. After claiming our luggage and a brief orientation, we boarded a luxurious bus for our trip to the city of Jerusalem. It really seemed quite surreal for me to actually be on Israeli soil…especially after so many years of anticipation.

As the coach made its way up the gentle rise to the majestic city of Jerusalem on historic Mount Zion, every eye was riveted to the windows. The sun had now begun to slowly rise, and its first rays of light began to gently highlight the beauty of Jerusalem's skyline. I began to recount the many writings that countless authors had penned over thousands of years, and I now understood the plight of histories' greatest writers, poets and historians…No amount of words could ever capture and illustrate such a sight. Tears filled my eyes and joy overflowed my heart as I realized that this was the dawn of truly the best day of my life!