Mr John D Frew

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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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I have four coincidences I would like to submit as follows; I was brought up on my father's small farm on the west coast of the Island of Arran in Scotland. We had a field above the farm that was used as a camp for both scouts and guides. In 1998 my wife and I were visiting my cousin in Vancouver. Her husband is a Presbyterian minister and, on the Sunday we attended his church. Following the service we went into the church hall for coffee and were introduced to other members of the congregation. We were speaking to a lady who was also a Scot and it turned out that she had been brought up in the small town of Kilsyth - outside Glasgow - where my wife had lived for a short time as an infant. When the lady asked where I came from, I said 'Arran'. "Ah" she said, "Machrie Bay". "Yes", I replied and she told me that she had spent a guide camp there in 1962 and that the boy from the farm had helped dig their latrine trench. "Yes" I replied, "and I still have the blisters". By coincidence, I was that boy! The second incident took place in Tobago last year where we met a Scots couple. I was born in Prestwick, on the Ayrshire coast, in a nursing home near the sea. The only other person I knew to have been born on the same nursing home was my sister. To my amazement, the lady had been born in the same nursing home just a few months after me. The third event concerns our daughter. When she was at university in London, she went into a M & S store and, whilst brousing, turned round to fine her Godmother standing behind her. On a more sombre note, I had a dream one night where our grandson and I were at Heathrow watching planes take off and land. In the dream, we were watching Concorde take off and, as she cleared the bank near the M4, I noticed flames coming from the engine of the aircraft. She made a turn to the left as the flames grew more intense and eventually crashed. To my horror, that is exactly what happened as she took off from Paris a few days later.
Total votes: 480
Date submitted:Sat, 14 Jan 2012 09:36:34 +0000Coincidence ID:3705