Sometimes we all feel a little hemmed in. My life this season has been played out surrounded by tall corn so I am literally hemmed in but it does not take much for me to lift my head and close me eyes and see for miles and miles and miles.  123pict1

Sometimes the pressure of an ordinary life makes one feel like taking flight. Everyone feels like this every now and then.  A good life carries with it responsibilities.  We wish for our childish ways. Our gypsy twin longs for the road.  Of course, we can’t just pack our two suitcases and move off whenever we feel like it so this is one of those times that I indulge myself in 360 memory.


360 memories need stillness or at least a stillness of your body so sit quietly in a chair or lean on the wall of the barn to begin.

Now, close your eyes and think of a happy memory. Go to where you belong. The home of your soul. Your dream place. I often go to my favourite beach at Mahunga Bay in Mahia, New Zealand. This is my dream place. I seldom get back there to visit in real time, I own no land there but I have brought memories with me and these sustain me while I am away.


Sitting in your chair or standing at your kitchen bench, conjure up the image of your dream place. You may have to lead your memory through the landscape to reach it. Out the door. Down a long flight of old wooden steps, through the garden, out the gate, across the road, then sharp beach grass then into the dunes, through the dunes with her burning sands and scratchy tall grasses along the shifting dune path.  Then you come up through two tall dunes and see the sea, rich in its sheer size,  cascading out in front of you, blue and cool and shimmery and flat yet ripply, shiny like old hot glass. The breath from the sea rasping across your sunburnt skin.  The scent of it, the salty aqua. 123pict8

Now comes the really cool part of  360 memory. Sense the direction of your gaze so you have control of your point of view. Then take control of your head and turn it slowly, watch the landscape change before your eyes like in a video game. Go slow. Consciously colouring in your view. Look long to your left. See the rocks and the sea, nut cracking on the rocks, spray lifting in protest. Look further to your left and you can see a small farmhouse way off down the beach, low and woody. Blown beach trees and hills up behind it. 123pict91

Then keep turning, shifting your feet below your body,   so you can pan across behind you seeing more dunes , more hills, the house you just left, then your own footsteps in the sand of the dunes, then turn again so you are looking to the right of your body, see way up the flat empty beach, the sand and the endless sea, then bring your head and your eyes and your feet with its body back to the view directly in front again. The sea, the sea, washing in and washing out with the whisper of windy treetops.  The hiss and the polite pacific splash of the low tidal wave.

Look down at your old self, past the blue strappy well worn beach dress to the bare feet and your shrunken shadow from the late morning sun.

As you drift through a 360 memory focus really hard on the landscape, looking up and down and far and wide. Fill in and fill out all the details you can remember.  Recall as much to your conscious mind as you can. Sometimes your memory will create one memory from many memories to fill in the details, that’s ok. Tbis is an escape after all, not a court drama.

Some of my favourite 360 memories are back to our childhood kitchen when I go through all the cupboards, opening and closing the cupboard doors and drawers and into the pantry, peering in and remembering what was on each shelf. There is no harm in it and you will be amazed what you do remember when you sharpen your inner eyes and direct your mind around the landscape of your memory. Maybe go into a childhood bedroom, sit your memory body on the side of the bed then look all around, the walls, the drawers, out the window, under the bed.  Your books, your clothes on the floor. It is all there in your memory. The good stuff.

I can take my memory body for a walk too if I have time.  Along the beach where I grew up, it is a different beach, you walk along the beach then cut up through the houses to the street and along the street and up to the little grocery store.  Or through the halls of a long lost friends house. Or I simply open my eyes and get on with my life. But it is always replenishing to take myself into a 360 memory.  To be a ghost for a while.

I wonder if my past self can feel my future self directing her head as she drinks in and stores every article of that beach, stacking memories carefully in on top of each other to be retrieved later.  Watching together.  Maybe that is why I never feel alone when I am alone which is most of the time for many of us.

We all have bad memories too of course. We screwed up. Or someone else screwed up and we were caught in their fire. And though we need not bury them (unless it is their time to be buried in the bad memory box after being cleaned up and shaken out and folded neatly) –  but I think we need not retrieve them in a 360 memory. Boot them out. The 360 memory is a memory using a map we create as we go- we direct our dreaming eyes.  We are looking at things and places. I deliberately expose my closeted, hooded, reigned in, restless nature to these wee gifts of mind travel to keep my gypsy self alive and well fed but in my control. I find a 360 memory to replenish myself not torture myself  Why would I bother with that. Bad memories sit and sulk in their boxes, unopened when I ghost past looking for a memory to visit. I decide where I go.

It is also I think important to note that these bad memories or regrets do not define us unless we choose them to. I am not a victim of my past. Bad memories can stay folded in the bad memory box for this exercise,  I choose to define myself using the waves of Mahunga Bay.  I choose where I go in a 360 memory. I go to the good places. That is the WHOLE idea.

As a side note, the 360 memory almost never works if I add another person or try to look at one. I cannot control other people, they are on trips of their own. They do not belong in my dream time. Boot them out too. Fundamental really.  Watching people as a ghost is kind of creepy anyway and people bring sadness.  Always. So I avoid them in a 360 memory.  I journey with myself. I am enough.

I love to go on my bike ride to high school in the early morning. Along beaches and past the jetty and the yachts and the fishing boats and woolsheds and up the hill.  I love that memory.

I hope you have a lovely day.

Love celi

WEATHER:  Wet and warm and windy.

Sunday 10/22 90% / 0.31 inRain likely, heavy at times in the morning. Thunder possible. High 71F. S winds shifting to WNW at 15 to 25 mph. Chance of rain 90%.

Sunday Night 10/22 60% / 0.33 inOvercast with rain showers at times. Low 48F. Winds N at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 60%.

7:12 am 6:01 pm
Waxing Crescent, 7% visible9:46 am 8:08 pm

34 Comments on “360 MEMORY

  1. you are being very philosophical….I do hope you are ok…..

    Wai skin looks very good and from what I can see it looks as tho its completely healing…what a wonderful job you did..are doing..

    Do hope that all is well…love P


    Sent: Sunday, October 22, 2017 at 3:12 PM

  2. While I have sometimes thought about things from my past and spent a little time dwelling on things as they were, you have given a whole new perspective to trips through memory lane. It is quite the gift! Thank you!!

  3. I often go to times when I’m swimming, with the perfect temperature water holding me and caressing my skin and easing my mind. It’s wonderful! 🙂

      • Usually it’s the back float looking up at the clouds in the sky and the trees along the bank, and any birds that might be flying by. 🙂

  4. I love this prose, these thoughts and memories. Your words had me tearing up this morning… I visualized that first spot I ever ran to as a young girl, escaping the chaos at home. Many times I just ran barefoot through the alfalfa fields to get to the mulberry trees along a section fence line, where I found my inner quiet.This is precisely why out here I often venture out to the river, to be with the wild things. Thank you for this lovely perspective on reflecting – there are indeed some long ago places where I can reflect on “the good stuff”.

  5. I don’t think I’ve ever done that. This made me wonder why. It’s wonderful that you have such vivid memories that you can recreate the experience. I’ll have to give this some thought. Wai looks like there are still a couple of spots yet to heal but he is looking quite happy with his new life. Have a restful Sunday if that’s possible.

  6. Thanks for this exercise….beautifully written and so very thoughtful. A good practice for all of us. Take care.

  7. Simply gorgeous. There’s such peace and replenishment to be found in inward journeys like this. Merely knowing that there are paths in my life, whether wholly historic or partly invented, that are utterly good and beautiful can give me a sense of security and control in the midst of life’s chaotic moments. Thanks for the lovely reminder.

  8. When the weather is hot, my mind takes me to places where the water meets the land. Quiet, shallow rivers with trees that cover it from both sides.
    When the weather is cool, but not cold, my mind takes me to dirt roads. Corn fields freshly harvested alongside the road. I walk with my hunting dog (an orange and white Brittany Spaniel) and my shotgun, hoping for Doves to rise off the corn.
    Oddly, the cool weather memories elicit a plethora of scent memories, while the hot weather one does not.

  9. *warm smile* Methinks you are on that plane south to the Shaky Isles already! Beautiful writing whilst awaiting . . . I guess we are all different. I am so busy in the todays and so planning and looking forwards to the morrows that I rarely glance over my shoulder backwards . . . and if I do, it is for a matter of seconds with a remembering smile or scowl and hopefully a lesson which was learnt . . . a flicker of a picture and then onwards . . .

  10. I think we all, at times, imagine just getting in the car and driving away. No packing, no goodbye, just gone. Unfortunately most of us can’t run away. I think these time trips make up for that, they’re like a deep cleansing breath and then we go on.

  11. WOW! My dreams are a happy, safe place for me and very colorful, too! Ironing gives me ample time for my ‘360s’ – SO peaceful! Thank you for this delight, Miss C.! – Sunny

  12. Thank you for letting us visit your memory palace. It’s a wonderful place, made clearer by your beautiful and evocative description. Mine is sitting on a weathered wooden fence overlooking a rich grassy pasture at the edge of a plateau, which drops down into rainforest. In the distance, a valley meanders out to the sea and opposite, mountains march away into the blue distance. It’s silent except for the buzz of insects and the occasional cry of a hawk circling above on the thermals…. You let the beauty in at the eyes and the bad stuff washes out of you, replaced by peace.

  13. So beautiful. I’m also a Midwesterner whose favorite places include ocean beaches. As I read your post I experienced a beloved beach again, one I’m unlikely to ever return to. Thanks for writing this post.

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