8th Day of Christmas and 1st ofJanathon – #12DCP

The 8th day on the sensory journey, time to start stepping away from the food don’t you think? However, I appreciate you may be a little jaded after a heavy night of New Year’s celebrations, so if you could just open your eyes a little the theme for today is:

Visual Experiences

Do you remember that moment when someone first challenged you with, ‘How do you know that you and I see the same things? Is what I see as blue the same as what you call blue?’ visual experiences may be unique to us as individuals, how will we ever really know, and they are rarely visual alone but involve all sorts of additional sensory and emotional context. There is scientific work going on to try and re-image brain activity but I’m not sure that this helps the paradox that when I see a pipe you may say it is not a pipe.

Many of my favourite visual experiences relate to nature, particularly plants and animals or views.  Surprise View above Derwentwater, or looking down at Rievaulx Abbey from the Terrace or some of the planting at Abbey Gardens, Tresco which I use as my image for my other blog.

However I also love man-made visual experiences from fractals to sculpture such as Scallop on Aldeburgh beach.

Then there are the images in our heads, part of the purpose of the sensory journey is to stimulate the imagination. I struggle when I’m writing to know how much description to give, or if like radio I should let the pictures form in the reader’s mind. If you are an Archers fan, what do you think of seeing the likes of Linda Snell in Borsetshire Life magazine?

So for today’s comments what are your strong visual experiences?

Your Spotify Playlist for today is here


Now a quick Janathon catch up.  Today marks the first day of Janathon. I did this for the first time last year and it was certainly a great way to get moving after the Christmas and New Year slump. My personal challenge is to try and learn to run, which has never been my strong point in the hope it will give me extra strength and stamina for the 2 mile Great East Swim.

This morning I downloaded the Get Running App and did just that.  Out the door 5 minutes quick walk warm up then 8 sets of 1 minute run 90 seconds walk then 5 minute cool down.  The app should get me up to 5K after 14 weeks.  Today I totalled 2.2 miles. I am impressed with the app, it is very clear when to walk, run, turn around and come home and nicely encouraging in tone; it is very easy to set up and use.


If you came here from the Janathon site a quick catch up on the 12 Days of Christmas Party. This year it is taking the form of a sensory journey. Each day the focus is on a different sense; for those that want to there will be a ghost story writing and sharing opportunity at the end. In the meantime each comment posted is an entry into the prize draw, you can go back and do previous days any time up to the end of the 12th Day. From today my posts will also include my Janathon blogs.


Posted on January 1, 2012, in #12DCP, 12 Days of Christmas Party, Janathon and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. I love to look at colours and combinations of colours and one way I know I can always lift my mood is to go into a wool shop. I can also look round places in my mind, not just visualising places I know but as a way of putting other thuings out of my head, like when I am wanting to get to sleep, I can imagine places and look round them. And I would hate to live anywhere if I couldn’t see a tree or two.

  2. Great to hear that you are taking up running. Running is one of my passions and I believe that people can really benefit both physically and psychologically from running.
    I am a coach with Framlingham Flyers. Each spring we hold a beginners course which like you app uses walk / run training and aims to take people from non-runner to 5k. (I am a big fan of walk /run and not just for beginners, I’ve used it for marathons).
    The biggest mistake that new runners make is trying to run too quickly. They give the first few run sections their all but then aren’t able to recover sufficiently to do the latter ones. My piece of advice is therefore not to worry about how slow you run. It doesn’t matter if you think you could walk quicker; just try to keep the running action going. At this stage don’t worry about you speed, you need to build time on your feet and distance, the speed can come later.
    Sorry about the unrequested advice, but I want people to experience the benefits of running and not be put off. Good luck, but most of all enjoy.

    • Thank you for your encouragement. I decided not to run on the road today due to the gales so now have to wait and go to the gym later – going to be testing working the treadmill and the app at the same time 🙂

  3. Firstly my encouragement too for your running. I know how much the swimming meant to you before, and how exciting your improvement was for me, watching from a distance. I know you will find this just as enjoyable, and I know I will be just as much in awe of you as I was before…

    Visual things are strange aren’t they. I have astigmatism in one eye, and am very shortsighted, and so many things that others can see are simply impossible for me. I have problems with some telescopes as my eyes tend to see the side of the tube rather than looking straight out. I can’t ever see those 3D images that are supposed to jump out at you no matter how I try.

    Yet I can see the kind of optical illustions that involve seeing two different pictures in one, the two faces and a vase, the lady who is also an old crone, these are simple for me, I can shift my perception easily from one image to the other. (lots of these here… http://bit.ly/zbOR02 )

    I agree that what you see can affect your imagination as well. For example, I saw Gone with the Wind before I read the book, so Scarlett and Rhett will forever be Vivien Leigh and Clark Gable in my mind’s eye. Yet I read Tolkein long before the films came out, and whilst the elves are as I would see them, the Hobbits really jarred. They aren’t as I had seen them. But now I have seen them portrayed on film I find it difficult to regain my initial imaginations. So is this a loss to me or a net gain? I can’t make my mind up.

    • Ah yes astigmatism when I don’t have my specs on the iPad is trapezium shaped…ie shorter top than bottom and to sloping sides…it’s most odd. Also I once had specs that had done the astigmatism correction wring all circles were oval…most nausea inducing

      • My varifocals don’t seem to do it as much, but I do remember as a kid new glasses always made the ground seem really far away… I would look down deliberately to get that weird lurching feeling…

        Did your NLP thing, I am still, no sound, muted colour, pictures, looking out of my own eyes. And you?

  4. Quite a few years ago I was studying various creive techniques and we did a short section on NLP one of the really interesting things was they asked everyone to be quiet and close their eyes and then imagine (they didn’t say visualise) themselves doing something fairly normal. That’s all they said. Then after we had done that they said now think about how you imagined it was it pictorial, moving or still, sound or no sound, colour or no colour, pictures or text, whe you looking at your self or looking through your own eyes. It was fascinating how different peoples minds had worked some highly visual some not and so on. It’s a great insight into your brains preferences apparently.

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