New immigrant Ayelet Mintz, who arrived in Israel from Brooklyn during the coronavirus epidemic, spoke to Arutz Sheva about her flight and unforgettable experience.
Arriving on a Nefesh B'Nefesh flight with 17 other new immigrants, Mintz said, "I've always felt a very spiritual tie to Israel, and I just feel super-happy to be here today."
"I'm here because I believe that I am indigenous to this land, whether or not I was born here, and this is my very birthright to be here, I feel like I am home when I am here, on a spiritual, ethnic, indigenous level, and this is where I want to create my life.
"I don't see myself feeling at home anywhere else in the entire globe, this is where I feel at home. And I simply feel like a guest everywhere else, even if I feel like a very comfortable guest everywhere else, I don't want to be a guest, I want to feel like I'm home for the rest of my life."
When asked about immigration during a global pandemic, Mintz said: "I would say the only second thoughts I've had were, 'Oh my G-d, I have to make this really happen way sooner and faster than I thought.'"
"If anything, it just expedited my process in terms of me really getting on it and really making it happen. Honestly, I feel like it's a total miracle that I'm here because the Jewish Agency stopped issuing visas at a certain point, and because I was so proactive about everything, I was able to obtain my visa just in the nick of time - I got the last seat on the last flight going out, and I just feel incredibly grateful to be here.
"I feel like when things are crazy, even more so I don't want to be a guest in a home that's not mine. I want to be somewhere where I feel safe, where I feel home, where I feel camaraderie, where I feel this interpersonal responsibility to take care of each other, and I feel really grateful and happy to be here in Israel, where I feel like that's true."