Pronunciation: [a la ra(n) tray]
Definition: Returning to normal
This is an expression I learned when I lived as an expat in France. Pronounced (a la ra(n) tray), the literal meaning is “at the return.” It’s an acknowledgement that you will see someone again when you both re-enter the real world after your summer vacation. Put simply, it means, “See you in September.”
In France, À la rentrée is a celebrated time and excitement is in the air. Students go back to school and adults are returning from summer vacation and going back to work. It is also a time for returning to normalcy.
This time of year presents a significant shift in many households. Some parents are tearfully putting their Kindergartener on the bus for the first time. Other parents are waving goodbye to their college student and driving off campus trying ever so bravely not to look in the rear view mirror.
It is natural to feel sad, worried, lonesome, or a bit lost at this time. It can be unsettling when family dynamics and daily routines change.
In France, I began to embrace la rentrée as a sort of mini-new year. It was a chance to start fresh with renewed energy for the fall. A new beginning. I took this opportunity to try new things and signed up for adult cooking classes and French language classes.
Do you remember the excitement of getting new school clothes? Can you recall the sweet smell of a new textbook? Think back to your brand new box of crayons and freshly sharpened pencils. On the first day of school, you are given a clean slate and filled with optimism for the coming school year.
Give yourself a fresh start
Rekindle that childhood excitement. This is a perfect time to get organized, start a new project and change routines. The crisp, fall air is your invitation to turn over a new leaf! Take another stab at that New Year’s resolution you made in January. Now is the time.
How will you adapt to la rentrée?
Welcome this fresh beginning. Dig in and learn something new. Change things up a bit! Refresh one of the rooms in your house and give it a makeover before the fall season begins. Fall is a great time to re-organize!
Re-enter your world and treat yourself to a fresh start. You deserve it.