Cambridge Coincidences Collection

Well I Never!

Professor David Spiegelhalter of Cambridge University wants to know about your coincidences!

Distant Relatives

I go to a weekly German class and every year we have a weekend in Germany to improve our knowledge of the language.One evening we were all discussing our reasons for learning the language and one of our frinds said her father's side of the family had originally come from Germany and that she had a great uncle in Leeds who used to run an engineering company,we were amazed because her great uncle is my wife's uncle and all the years we have been friends we never knew.

Name confusion

I have the same name as someone else I work with in a big company. I used to get emails for them all the time - once or twice a week, on occasions several in one day. I changed my email profile to have my job title in brackets, it made little difference, I changed it again - this time to show my business unit. This stopped the problem entirely. This morning I remarked for the first time that I've not had a mis-addressed email in over a year. This afternoon I had one. What are the odds! (and add the odds of my seeing this the same day!)

Mr

A few weeks before Xmas 2012, I bought my first ever Beige Corduroy Jacket and on wearing it on 2-3 occasions was asked by friends jokingly, "when's the chemistry lesson going to start?" or "you look like a school teacher".......I pointed out to them that for the full "teacher look", the jacket needed leather sew on patches on the outside of the elbows.....they all agreed. In between Xmas and New Year my wife and I, had the onerous task of emptying the house of my recently passed Mother-in Law, whilst sorting out one of the rooms, my wife opened a drawer and

Pint Shot Riot

Was texting a friend last summer asking if he was coming out for a drink on Friday night. I noticed whilst texting that the word 'pint' also spelt 'shot' and 'riot' due to the nature of predictive texting. I mentioned this in my text to my friend and within five minutes my friend rang me and sounded extremely worried. He went on to explain he was currently in a hotel room in York and had met an old friend he had not seen for many years on a train the previous day. This old friend asked my friend if he had heard any good music lately.

Wasted stamp

Years ago I went on a cycle touring holiday in the south of France with three friends. After three or four weeks away, one of them decided he'd better send five or six postcards to various friends from college. That afternoon, we cycled into the local small town to find a postbox. Before finding one, my mate saw one of these same friends walking towards him down the street. Also on holiday, and neither had any idea that the other would be in France, let alone the same place at the same time. Postcard duly handed over, stamp wasted.

Job interview

I was living in Portland, Maine (USA), and was going to be interviewing for a job in Rochester, NY in a week or two. I had never met or spoken with the interviewing manager. Before this interview, I had to travel to Santa Clara for business at the same time that a golf tournament was being played at Pebble Beach. I visited the golf tournament, which was being played across three different golf courses, and got caught in a rain storm. I took cover under a nearby deck. While waiting for the rain to pass I over heard someone near me having a conversation about Rochester, NY.

happy campers (eventually)

We hired a tent from an outdoor store located in Kettering in Northamptonshire to take with us on our annual holiday to Hayle in Cornwall. When we tried to erect the tent we discovered that the shop had packed the wrong size canvas in the bag. We phoned the company to find out what we should do i.e. hire another tent locally or do B&B instead etc. The person who answered the phone asked if we had phoned before - another customer with the wrong size canvas had also contacted them - they were located in Redruth, about 8 to 10 miles away!

Birthday coincidences

My son's birthday is 2nd July, my husband's is 4th July and my late father-in-law's was 6th July. I found out I was pregnant with my son day that my father-in-law died. My Grandfather's birthday was 23rd September, my mother's is 25th September and my daughter's is 27th September. Oh, and me and my sister-in-law share the same birthday - 4th December.

A chance meeting on holiday

We lived in Ely in Cambridgeshire and went on holiday to Interlaken in Switzerland. One fine day we are walking down the street, and I see a class mate and her family walking towards me, so said "hello" much to their surprise too. Not just a coincidence of place but of timing too, a few more seconds and we'd have turned off and never known they were even in the same town.

Easy to remember this phone number

My friend and I lived on different sides of Ely but went to the same school. His parents had been at Ely for quite some time before I and my family arrived in 1972 though since we were the same age it's not surprising that we went to the same school. What is surprising is that when BT allocated us our phone number on arrival, it was Ely 36196. Just one digit different to his, being Ely 36197. Very useful. We never forgot each other's numbers.

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