I was thinking back on past times the other day when out of the blue a memory came back to me of a coincidental occurance that happened a few years ago, which I had long forgotten about. So I thought I’d share it here in my blog, seeing as I have a habit of talking about coincidences.
Back in grade 12 during one of the school holidays our family went for a trip out to Alice Springs / Uluru. Stayed a few days there and saw all the sights, but instead of going straight back home we decided to keep driving down and make an impromptu visit to Adelaide to see the rellies.
I remember on the morning we drove out of Uluru, we stopped at a petrol station which was literally in the middle of nowhere – it was on the main highway that goes straight down the Northern Territory, but it was in the dead heart of the outback, miles away from any kind of civilisation. So we stopped to fill up the car and grabbed a quick feed at the cafe, sitting outside to eat our meal.
A decent amount of tourists pulled up at the petrol station during our time there, but in particular, there was a minibus that grabbed my attention. It was full of what looked like 16-17 year old students from all kinds of ethnic backgrounds on an excursion to the outback, and I remember seeing this one guy walk out of the bus and start dribbling a soccer ball, while his friends watched and marvelled at his ball-handling skills. I wasn’t sure what it was, but there was definitely something about him that kept me watching and got me thinking…
We ate out meal and continued on our drive down south, and I didn’t think any more of my encounter with the soccer player at the petrol station.
Back at school a few weeks later in our music class, we were discussing what what we did and where we went on our holidays, and of course I mentioned our trip to the NT to see Ayers Rock. On hearing this, one of the guys in the class also said that he went to Ayers Rock too, so we got chatting and it turns out he went there with a group of exchange students – because he was an an exchange student himself, from Brazil. And then it clicked… “Do you remember being at a petrol station in the middle of nowhere dribbling a soccer ball?”
He remembered – and he proceeded to describe to me the exact same petrol station, at the exact same time of day.
It most definitley proved to me that it’s a small world.
On a deeper level though – I did think to myself at the time, ‘that guy kinda looks like the exchange student from school,’ but the chances of that being the case were way too low to warrant me wanting to go up up to him and say hi. So I didn’t. But if I had, the experience of coincidence would have been taken to a whole new level because we both would have physically partaken in it, rather than merely relate to it at a later date. Which leads me to conclude that if an opportunity exists for you to take but you’re unsure of what the outcome might be – you’re best to just follow your instincts and take the chance regardless.