Dreaming of Diana

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was produced by the Winton programme for the public understanding of risk based in the Statistical Laboratory in the University of Cambridge. The aim was to help improve the way that uncertainty and risk are discussed in society, and show how probability and statistics can be both useful and entertaining.

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The night that Princess Diana died, I woke up having had an extraordinary and very memorable dream about Diana, who I didn’t think about much at all, and had certainly never dreamt about her before. I couldn’t go back to sleep and turned the radio on. About half an hour later the news came on that there had been an accident. It seems I was not alone, there is a book called ‘Dreaming of Diana’ that includes other people’s similar experience.
Total votes: 503
Date submitted:Sat, 14 Jan 2012 09:18:10 +0000Coincidence ID:3664


Some years ago I was involved in a long, drawn out court case. Shortly after one of the last hearings, I was driving and saw a small commotion on a corner over the other side of a large roundabout. To my own surprise I stopped the car and got out to see what it was, when someone was shot. I thought I should not stay around, and left, but watched the news later on TV to find out more about it. It had been an armed bank robbery, and the person that was shot was the same man who was the cause of the court case. The hearing that had just occurred was to be the last one where he appeared, I thought would not be seeing him again. He had been driving at the same time in the opposite direction to me, nearer to the ‘scene of the crime’ and had also stopped and gone to look. I did later get some financial compensation for his actions from the court, but seeing him shot (in the foot) meant so much more. The odds on us both not only driving past the same unusual incident at the same time, but also being the only ones (that I could see) to stop our cars and get out to go and have a look must be extraordinary . I can’t find it in myself to call it a 'mere coincidence'.