When I think about my origins as they relate to immigration, my mind transports to the turn of the century – to boats and being welcomed by Lady Liberty. In true Ashkenazi Jewish fashion, my family passed through Ellis Island to begin their new lives in the land of opportunity. I imagine the voyage was arduous and the immigration process was chaotic and difficult.
But Terminal 1 in Ben Gurion wasn’t crowded with quarantined travelers, and my 9.5-hour flight was nothing in comparison to scurvy and sea sickness. My last name did get mistranslated, just like my ancestors, but I’ll take the extra “yud” in Jacobs for the ease of the experience.
I could describe the intricacies of what happened when I landed in Terminal 3 at 6:25 AM and exited what I affectionately refer to as the communist room (absorption office) at 10:46 AM. But I am instead more inclined to present these pictures with pithy captions to summarize the Israeli Ellis Island.
And now I’m Israeli.