Could I go a year without looking at words?

I don’t have very good eyes anymore. I used to have fantastic eyes. I used to be the person who would pride themselves on having better eyesight than anyone else.

“Someone has lost an earring – step back…I’m on to it!”

Not anymore…now I have astigmatisms and all kinds of floaters drifting around, waging imaginary battles as they dance across my ever moving sight. My eyes are bad, and my increasing involvement with computers in the last decade have been so heavily responsible for their on going deterioration.

I have a fantasy, I wonder what it would be like to live somewhere remote and spend an entire year without looking at a single word of print. Somewhere where there are no sign posts even…nothing…in any language. Not to take any books, nor write any thoughts or ideas. To live one full year without so much as looking at a calendar. Would it be possible? Would I go insane? Or would my eyes regenerate themselves from looking only at 3 dimensional spaces. It would be a great feat if I could go just one week without touching my mobile phone.

I think so many humans are deprived daily of the chance to see long distances. We are crammed so close together in our cities most of the time, we are lucky if we can gaze a few blocks away. I am fortunate here in wellington that there are many mountains and rolling hillsides that it is quite easy for me to climb up and look out across great distances. One of my favorite runs takes me up the top of a great big hill where I can see the coastline on both sides of the harbor. It is stunning and I am so grateful to be here in this amazing landscape.

I don’t know if I will ever get around to trying out living a year without looking at print, but it is still an interesting thought. To spend a year like our early human ancestors, living with no means of documenting one’s thoughts and also gaining no insight in to the thoughts of others. It might sound like a horrible scenario, but it’s still a notion that I often daydream about on those days when the computer is ruling my horizon with a menacing glare, and all I can think about are those hills and forests and oceans that I would rather be looking at.

 

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