Strange Coincidences: The Woman in the Photograph

This is the last Strange Coincidences post, and is one of my own stories.

I used to live in a little house in Union City, California, when I was about nine or ten. Two sisters lived close by, Shannon and Krystal, and we were really good friends and played nearly every day. They did not have the best home life, and so sometimes we’d go over to their grandparents’ house.

There was a photograph on the wall. It was huge–maybe four feet tall. It was of a very glamourous woman, in black and white. I kept looking at the photo, over and over. She looked really familiar, but I couldn’t put my finger on why. I still can’t believe I didn’t recognise the photo, but I suppose you really don’t expect a photo of someone you know to show up on a stranger’s wall.

A few weeks or months later, my mom was going through her storage and stumbled across her old modelling portfolio. Shannon was over and we flipped through it. I was amazed. My mom looked so beautiful in all of them, though the 70s fashion in a couple of them made us giggle. She turned the page and me and Shannon both squeaked “No way!”

Yep. You guessed it–it was that photo. A photo of my mom had somehow ended up on my friend’s grandfather’s wall.

It’s hard to know how big of a coincidence that was. Her grandfather had been a photographer, and heck, he might have even photographed my mom when she was modelling in San Francisco, though he didn’t take that photo–he’d bought it at a sale. But still. He’d bought an exact photo that my mom had chosen to keep from that shoot, and my mom had happened to find it when Shannon was over. Nine year old me was astounded, and I still find it a very strange coincidence.

In that photo, my mother was only a little order than I am now–she was 24 and this was taken in 1978, 10 years before I was born.

My mom and me on my 21st birthday

And that concludes my spotlight on strange coincidences. I hope you enjoyed the series. If you have any stories you want to send me later on, I’d still be happy to hear them, though I probably won’t post them any more. I had a wide range of stories, from the small to the life-threatening. I enjoyed posting them all, and thank you to those of you who sent me anecdotes. I don’t ascribe a higher meaning to them, but they do make you think and realise the world can be a funny place. Similar to the six degrees of separation, we’re not as far removed from each other as one might think.


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