In looking for the right name for my blog, I stumbled upon different articles listing words that don’t have true equivalents in English. One of those words was “dérive”.
According to Thought Catalog, here is how they define and explain “dérive”:
Derive (n.) French : drift; a spontaneous journey where the traveler leaves their life behind for a time to let the spirit of the landscape and architecture attract and move them.
In 2014, this seemed to perfectly describe what I was doing (pursuing an unexpected opportunity to teach English in France) and what I was hoping to get out of this experience (a renewed sense of what I wanted to accomplish personally and professionally by changing my surroundings and diving into a new culture). The fact that it was also a French word, seemed to fit.
Whether or not this is an accurate definition of the word, I can’t confirm. However, I’m choosing to see this as the singular benefit of living in a post-truth world – I can believe that this word romantically encompasses the adventure, the self-discovery and the irony of a secret amusing only to myself as I realized that was never going to be a side trip, but more likely a fork in a road that just might lead me in an entirely new direction.
So until someone corrects me, this is what “dérive” means to me.