How to return to Israel

27 Elul 5776 Hanoch Ne’eman Jerusalem

This post is about the best way to arrive  in Israel. If you want to ask the more philosophic question of how one engenders the dorothy-like sentiment of “there is no place like home“, I defer you to other places.

But what is the best way to arrive in Israel? As I live in Jerusalem, I usually head from baggage claim to those beloved schlemiels waiting for you with a Nesher sherut van by the curb outside. That is usually a low point in my trip. After some twenty hours of travel, the last thing I feel like is piling into a taxi van for ninety minutes more of squashed travel. This week, when I returned from Phoenix via LA, I did what I have often thought of doing, but did not; I went to Tel Aviv first. It was a good decision and I think I am going to do this always from now on.

First of all, you don’t have to get in a van, rather you can buy a train ticket for 13.50 and get on the train which pulls up in the station right below the airport exit. There is room for your suitcase and you can sit like a human being as the train makes the 15 minute trip to Tel Aviv. Got off at the Center Station and took #5 bus to dizengoff street. Got out and walked towards sea. Came to Hayarkon street near the Carlton and walked through the nice park there. Arrived at lookout over ocean, beautiful and refreshing ocean breeze. Walked down to marina and checked out boats and sailboat rental. Some young kids were having lessons in cute small sailboats with a teacher in an inflatable motorboat. Was thinking of buying something to eat but was tired so went back to Dizengoff, took 5 back to Arlosoroff and took 480 to Jerusalem. What a mechaya; I recommend to all travellers arriving in Israel to first go to Tel Aviv, have something (kosher) to eat there, a glass of wine perhaps, and then go on to your destination. Going straight to Jerusalem is like reciting shacharis and skipping pesukei d’zimra. You know what I mean? You need to warm up.

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