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odd (eerie) travel coincidences you have had

odd (eerie) travel coincidences you have had

Old Aug 8, 12, 9:30 pm
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odd (eerie) travel coincidences you have had

(1)I was on Metro line 3 in Paris St. Lazare station, I noticed a (pretty) girl, but what stood out, she had (a toy=plastic) sword. We both rode in separate cars on the metro, some 20 stations later, I got out at the last stop and (before heading to my hotel), I stopped into a shopping mall and after browsing went to the supermarket to buy something to bring back to my hotel; eventually when I got on line to check out, I looked over to the next aisle--the girl with the sword was also checking out.
(2)Several years ago, I and a friend of mine were separately traveling in Europe; we made tentative plans to meet in Luzern (Switzerland) on August 15. 10 days earlier I was in Basle (Switzerland), and on exiting the hotel I was staying at I heard someone calling my name, my friend was eating dinner in the hotel's restaurants outdoor patio.
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Old Aug 8, 12, 10:10 pm
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Interesting topic. Can’t say I’ve met anyone overseas that I knew back home, but I have happened upon people from my own, specific hometown in the U.S. while abroad.

So really, I guess I have nothing to add to the thread.
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Old Aug 8, 12, 10:14 pm
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About 10 years ago, I had a SuperShuttle pick me up to take me to LAX for my flight on UA to NRT. There was a girl sorta asleep in the back of the van. Arrived at LAX, i got out, checked in and boarded my flight.

Upon arrival at NRT, the plane was at a remote parking area, so everyone had to deplane via stairs and get on one of the buses to the terminal.

I sat down and then a girl sits next to me. She looks at me and says, "hey, weren't you on the SuperShuttle?"
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Old Aug 9, 12, 2:09 am
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I once ended up with my volunteer supervisor in a SuperShuttle despite the fact she lives some ways away from me. It was kind of nice but kind of awkward.
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Old Aug 9, 12, 5:55 am
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1. A few years back I was a member of a church in San Antonio.

After the service I heard a commotion behind me and saw two young ladies hugging. It seems that one, who was also a member of the church, bumped into the other, who she had met years earlier in Russia. They had not seen each other since.

The Russian had immigrated to the US made her way to SAT.

2. I ran into someone I knew from SAT in the middle of nowhere (literally), Saudi Arabia. I had not seen him in 4 or 5 years.

Last edited by Gamecock; Aug 10, 12 at 7:04 am
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Old Aug 9, 12, 5:58 am
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Originally Posted by nrr View Post
I looked over to the next aisle--the girl with the sword was also checking out.
Did she still have the sword?
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Old Aug 9, 12, 6:05 am
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Many years ago, I was on a plane, taking a well-earned vacation to a spa in Texas. I struck up a conversation with a couple in the opposite row (rare for me, since I usually don't like talking to fellow passengers) about where I was headed, what I was planning to do, etc.

Two years later I decided to take another well-earned vacation to a different spa, this one in Arizona. I struck up a conversation with a couple in the same row (again, rare for me). After about three minutes we realized that this was the same couple I'd spoken to two years earlier. It was the spa thing that triggered their memory.
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Old Aug 9, 12, 7:43 am
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Originally Posted by Gamecock View Post
Did she still have the sword?
Yes, that's how I immediately recognized her on the c/o line.
[Just a guess, the sword was probably a gift to a youngster.]
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Old Aug 9, 12, 12:07 pm
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There have been similar threads in the past, so I've probably repeated some of these stories...

I lived in Saudi Arabia (Dhahran, Aramco Brat) for a few years as a teen. School was on a yearround schedule, which effectively means you have 3 ~3 month terms with 5-6 weeks off in between each term. Given that it was an expat community, many families would go on extended vacations during the intersession. As a young teen, I became somewhat blase about the fact that I'd be walking through an airport or hotel lobby thousands of miles from home & run into a school friend. It seemed commonplace at the time.

One of my friends did a term abroad in London during our junior year in college. A bunch of us went to visit him during winter break. We were all camping it up taking a photo with some Madame Tussaud's wax figure when one of his childhood friends (from LA) stumbled into us.

Senior year in college I was coming back to Chicago after having been gone for winter break. I climbed into a shuttle to discover one of my close friends from freshman year--who several years older & long graduated--was sitting in the back of the shuttle, having just arrived in town because of a job relocation.

My Mom's family were expats in Tangier, Morocco, shortly after WW2. Given that air travel wasn't prevalent at the time, they didn't get to go back to the US very frequently, and since my Mom lived there from about age 5, she didn't know many of her US-based relatives. One day some US Navy ship was in port and--as the expat kids normally did--she and friends decided to join in on a bus tour that the local US community was offering to the visiting military. The guy behind her on the bus was talking to his buddy & happened to mention his hometown--a tiny little town on Long Island--that happened to be my Mom's hometown, too. She turned around, introduced herself & it turned out to be a cousin she'd never met before.

Last year my Mom & I were in Tangier and doing research at the Tangier American Legation Institute for Moroccan Studies (the former American Legation Museum). We were chatting with the institute's director one day when his lunch appointment--a US expat--arrived. He introduced us all and it was immediately that clear that the man is a distant cousin of my mother & I. (Distinctive last name & once we commented on it, he mentioned a few of the better-know ancestors who are also in our family tree.)
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Old Aug 9, 12, 12:38 pm
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Just wondering why you call these "eerie"? For any given event, certainly unlikely. But in the grand scheme of all possible human interactions, it is actually extremely likely that something like this will happen at least once in your life - and the more you travel, the more likely it is.

It's called the likelihood of improbable events. Even the most improbable event becomes likely if you give it enough chances to happen. If you toss a coin ten times, it is extremely unlikely that you will get ten heads in a row. But if you do the test often enough, then it becomes very likely that it will happen at least once.
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Old Aug 9, 12, 12:53 pm
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Two that come to mind but neither as good as some of these..

Many years ago sitting in a window seat on a delayed flight still at the gate. Out of the corner of my eye I notice the guy in the middle was staring at me. I kept my nose in my book until he said my name...turns out he used to work for me and I didn't recognize him at all. This was in a city where neither of us live, nor had we.

A recent one. Was in ATL in June after an int'l delay would have forced a misconnect to my original destination. I had changed my destination and was in one of the smoking rooms by the new gate. Looked up from my phone, and the guy across from me is the person that recruited me to my current company, who I haven't seen in years. More coincidentally, he had just come off the inbound that I was about to get on, and in the seat right next to where I was about to be seated. Alas, that plane went mech. and was swapped so it ended there and we went on our separate ways.
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Old Aug 9, 12, 12:57 pm
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1) When I was in high school, visited Korea with my sis and uncle. On the way back, saw a guy at the gate at GMP pushing his grandfather (looked like) in a wheelchair. At LAX, saw him again at the gate for our flight to ATL. The next Sunday at church, I saw this guy after service. Turns out he was moving from Seoul to Atlanta and was staying with family there who attended my church. Go figure.

2) On my honeymoon to Tahiti, met another couple on the shuttle from the airport to our resort on Moorea who lived literally 5 minutes from us. Later in Bora Bora, met another couple at the pool who attended the same university (of Michigan - GO BLUE!) as me. Although we didn't know each other, the bride and I were the same major and same year. Apparently, we had at least a couple of classes together and had a lot of the same friends.
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Old Aug 9, 12, 1:47 pm
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In 2009, we were on a flight LHR-BOS, with our twins, who were then a month old. We had a nice conversation with the couple behind us, one of whom turned out to be a local pediatrician. Two years later, the same couple was again behind us. They didn't recognize us but had actually recognized the kids, even though the kids were infants when the couple first saw them.

Shortly after my wife and I got engaged in 2001, her former boss invited us out to brunch (He had introduced us.). We were living in NYC at the time, but my parents came in from Boston. Her boss brought a date. The date and my mother started chatting, noticed an unusual number of coincidences regarding their backgrounds and, after about 15 minutes, realized that they were third cousins who hadn't seen each other since they were kids at camp.

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Old Aug 9, 12, 4:09 pm
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I've had a lot of random encounters with friends and acquiantances on planes and such, but the craziest for me was at the Kazangula border crossing between Zambia and Botswana. My sister and I were staying in Livingstone, and doing a day trip to Chobe NP. At the border, after going through immigration we had to take a little boat across the river from the Zambia side to Botswana. Our guides directed us into a boat with another American couple in it - we were behind them, so I couldn't see their faces but I did see that the woman was wearing a shirt with a NY law firm's name on it, which piqued my interest a little as I am a lawyer.

When we got off the boat, my sister and I were directed to our safari vehicle, while the other couple was sent to another car as they were going to the airport in Kasane. The driver of that car greeted the guy by name, and it was at that point that I realized he was someone who I'd gone to law school with and hadn't seen in the 5 years since we graduated.

I also once met a guy on a plane from Budapest to Prague who was in grad school with one of my best friends from high school.
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Old Aug 9, 12, 5:02 pm
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had the same hotel room on my two visits to Dublin.
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