Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Four hours at O'Hare

Spend four hours at a busy airport like O'Hare in Chicago, as I did yesterday, and you'll understand why the human race isn't ready for "disclosure" of an "advanced alien presence", and won't be for many, many years (probably centuries), at least not on a societal level (the individual level is a different question, and is where we should be looking, but I digress...).

Leaving that aside, however, O'Hare did turn out to be an interesting experience for me in terms of weird coincidences.

First, a bit of back story. Several years ago, I was flying through O'Hare on my way to Cedar Rapids to interview Kevin Randle for Fields of Fear, and due to weather our flight was delayed for 9 hours. Now, anyone who has ever been to O'Hare knows that it's a huge airport, with multiple terminals, and within each terminal multiple concourses. It's an easy place to get lost, and there are all sorts of nooks and crannies. Anyway, as I was walking through the airport, who should I see but one of my best friends, who was studying in Mississippi but was on his way home to England for a visit. He was in a coffee shop. If I hadn't been held over, I would have missed him. If I hadn't taken a look over my shoulder at the coffee shop, I would have missed him. If... if... always "if"...

Let's just say that it was amazing coincidence, particularly in that airport on that day, with people packed in like sardines.

All of which is to let you know that I have a history of coincidences at O'Hare... which brings me to yesterday.

My flight to Los Angeles was through O'Hare, with a 4 hour stopover. Four hours is a lot of time to kill, so I wandered around through several different concourses. I didn't have any idea of which gate my flight to LA would be departing from, because it hadn't been posted yet. After about half an hour of walking around, I grabbed a hamburger from McDonald's and found a seat at gate B6, totally at random. I ate my burger, listened to my MP3 player for half of the Mumford & Sons album, watched a bit of CNN, and then walked over to the departures board to see if my flight had been assigned a gate yet. Indeed, it had - B6!

I smiled to myself as I pondered the odds of me choosing at random, in such a large airport, the exact gate that my flight was going to be assigned to, and then I went back over to the seating area at B6, sat down, and listened to some more music and watched some more CNN. After about an hour, with an hour and a half still to kill, I decided to go and get a copy of the New York Times to help me fill the rest of the time. I went down to the Hudson News by gate B16, bought the paper, and walked out into the hall. Just as I did, an announcement came over the PA - my flight had been relocated to a new gate.

B16, right next to where I was standing at that very moment.

There was only one thing I could do when faced with this second coincidence - I sat down, cued up Golden Earring on my MP3 player, hit play for "The Twilight Zone", and settled down to wait for my flight.

It was, as Arsenio Hall used to say, one of those things that makes a person go "hmm..."

Paul Kimball


Ryan P. said...

Have you noticed more of these things happening to you since your time as a ghost investigator on Ghost Cases?

Lance said...

Nice story!

Love the mention of the amazing Golden Earring.

I have a completely restored Twilight Zone pinball (often called the best pinball machine ever made, certainly one of the most elaborate) and the GE song is the inescapable soundtrack.


Paul Kimball said...

Golden Earring is one of the 1,000 greatest bands ever!! ;-)

Everyone should drive through the desert at night whilst listening to "Radar Love" at least once.


Nick Redfern said...

Radar Love? Golden Earring? Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear...


Paul Kimball said...

Well, I couldn't find a Ramones song that fit... ;-)

Paul Kimball said...


Nope, can't say that I have.