Wanderjahr: Refers to taking time out from one's normal routine. Many American college students travel out west, or go backpacking across Europe, in search of themselves before getting on with the rest of their lives. This is a wanderjahr. I went on a three month wanderjahr to the ski slopes of Utah when I was a senior in college. Myself and I had a good time. A character' wanderjahr can also be period during which he or she engages in deep thought or seeks personal insight.
An Example from Literature: Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert recounts her personal wanderjahr.
My Try: "I won't be coming to visit anymore, Mama. I'm done," Netty said, not sure if it mattered, saying it. "You had me all these years thinking I was someone I'm not. It wasn't me you couldn't bear to see everyday. You hardly saw me at all. And instead of telling me or daddy the truth you crawl in the church freezer during Lou Ellen's bridal brunch."
AnnaBelle Mae had helped Netty pack her suitcases, nattering on about how Netty needed to stay home and take care of those chillun. Netty promised she would write and that she would be back before anyone hardly missed her. But she had to go. She had denied the world its chance at her and this was her time to face it. "Yo daddy's heart is breaking double-over," AnnaBelle Mae told her.
"Daddy's heart cain't break," Netty answered. "It's dried up."
AnnaBelle Mae shook her head at Netty. "You go on then. When you find yo' self, bring her on back here with you, 'cause I sure want to meet who you really is, if'n this ain't you I'm looking at."
Have you ever gone on a Wanderjahr? Where did you go? Why? What did you do? How did it broaden your understanding of self and the world?
April 28th - Xenia