Walking in the Norfolk Heritage Park in Sheffield.

Walk to think

Walk to expand

Walk to imagine

Walk to ideate

Walk to make it possible

Walk to dream

Walk to breathe

Walk to free

Walk to travel

Walk to experience

Walk to map

Walk to touch

Walk to see

Walk to listen

Walk to smell

Walk to taste

Walk to explore

Walk to discover

Walk to embrace

Walk to rethink

Walk to pause

Walk to play

Walk to inspect

Walk to move

Walk to progress

Walk to stimulate

Walk to connect

Walk to learn

Walk to pace

Walk to structure

Walk to restructure

Walk to destroy

Walk to create

Walk to meet

Walk to be alone

Walk to be with people

Walk to socialise

Walk to settle

Walk to unsettle

Walk to exercise

Walk to question

Walk to be

The walk has been a common literary metaphor, notably used by Antonio Machado in “Caminante, no hay camino” to talk about constructing the future through walking. Also, it has been used as a recurrent mechanism of intellectual inspiration among academics, notably by Charles Darwin or Oliver Sachs.

In October-November 2022 I’ve been granted a two-month sabbatical, which has been my first sabbatical, to focus on grant writing and other research activities including a visit to Helsinki at the “Symposium Technoscientific Practices of Music; New Technologies, Instruments and Agents” and a research performance at “Peforming Critical AI I: feedback, noise, corpus, code” in Cafe OTO. I have decided to mostly work from home in Sheffield to optimise my concentration. Something that I’ve tried to incorporate in this isolated period has been to take a daily walk. The daily walk has been typically after lunchtime or before or right after tea time because the darkness is approaching earlier and the day and the year. Sometimes, I’ve also taken a walk in the mornings or before lunch, depending on the other activities.

During one of these walks, it occurred to me that I should mention the relevance of taking a walk when having this special time for thinking and writing, which can be also applied to writing a book or other isolated individual tasks that require concentration and high intellectual output. The above text has been produced during one of my daily walks using an audio recorder app on my phone. Moving forward, something I would like to keep once I return to my normal duties is my daily walk.

Acknowledgments

My sincere thank you to all my colleagues at DMU who have supported my sabbatical, with special thanks to the MTI2 family (Leigh Landy, James Andean, Peter Batchelor, Simon Atkinson, Bret Battey, John Young, Petros Galanakis) and the DMU Research Services, especially Tom Moore, Finella Bottomley, and Gaia Rossetti for their daily support. Also thank you to the programmes ‘Living in Digital Society’ led by Prof Gabriel Egan, and the Future Research Leaders programme led by Prof Mike Baynham and Prof Deborah Cartmell for their mentoring roles and trust. Finally, thanks to the Research Innovation and Scholarship Award (RISA), with special thanks to the Director of Research Services Dr Meera Warrier, the Interim Deputy Dean for the Faculty of Computing, Engineering and Media (CEM) Dr James Russell, the Interim Head of the Leicester Media School (LMS) Dr Allan Taylor, the Dean for the Faculty of CEM Prof Shushma Patel and the Associate Dean (Research & Innovation) in CEM Prof Raffaella Villa for their support.