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1. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 9y

Often when I am traveling, and sitting around, doing nothing at all, I meet the most interesting people. If there was a prize for the most interesting one of all, the one I met on Sunday, in Hamburg wins.

I was in a hostel, in Hamburg, just drinking lots of coffee, and falling asleep in chairs, because of not a lot of sleep during the previous 2 nights.
A 62 year old German man was hanging around me, all the time. After a few hours, he said, is your mothers name Shiela. When I saw u sitting there, I thought, that is Shiela sitting there. Then he said, I heard Shiela had a baby. I knew your mother, in Spain, in 1967. Then he asked me, what my name is.
This man has never seen me before, and has not seen my mother, since 1967. I was born, in 1969.

Mel

[ Edit: Edited on Mar 13, 2007, at 2:40 AM by Mel. ]

2. Posted by meterpai (Budding Member 51 posts) 9y

that's interesting in a creepy way...

3. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 9y

It wasnt creepy, at all Meterpai.
Just an amazing co-incidence.
I look very like my mother.

Mel

4. Posted by Lily... (Budding Member 106 posts) 9y

You're mother made a very great impression on that man's life, as he has not forgotten her in like what, 40 years?

That's really cool.

5. Posted by john7buck (Respected Member 458 posts) 9y

I'm a bit dense. Did this guy in fact know your mother. It seems that he did. In which case, that's an amazing story.

I'm always waiting for that random encounter to happen to me where you meet someone you know in a totally bizarre place or something like this story. Hasn't happened.

I did meet a Dutch guy in Borneo who had a Czech grandfather who had died in the war after impregnating his grandmother. I have a Czech grandfather who was killed in a factory explosion around the same time (my mother was only 2 days old). Obviously they weren't the same guy, but the two of us took a picture together and it is eery how similar we look. I think it probably has more to do with similar blue eyes and male-pattern baldness though.

6. Posted by samsara_ (Travel Guru 5353 posts) 9y

I was on the Navimag going down the coast of chile around this time last year. I was chatting to an American guy about Ireland and how much it has changed in the last few years.

Next thing, this guy who was sitting beside us piped up to something we were saying, and once he opened his mouth it was clear he was Irish. So, naturally, both being Irish and nosey, we started having a big chat about where we were both from and so on.

About a half hour of chatting later, he randomly said "You're not Brian Moriarty's sister are you?" at which point I almost fell of my chair. Turns out he was in my brothers class at university.

He mentioned he was going down to Ushuaia to meet his friends Dave and Claire who I actually had met many times before! :) Ended up hanging out with them down in Ush. for a few days!

What a coincidence!!

7. Posted by magykal1 (Travel Guru 2026 posts) 9y

Not as startling a coincidence encounter as Mels but just last week I was sitting in a guest house at Tiger Leaping Gorge and started chatting to someone who looked a bit familiar. Turned out they were in my year on the same course at the same university as me...

8. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 9y

Quoting john7buck

I'm a bit dense. Did this guy in fact know your mother. It seems that he did. In which case, that's an amazing story.

He did. He met my mother and a couple of her friends, in a bar, in Spain. A couple of years later, he contacted my mothers friend, and asked her to come to Germany and marry him. They were married for 38 years, and are now getting divorced. He has no money, because of some divorce complications, and that is why he happened to be staying at a hostel. My mother and this woman also lost contact, when they left Spain. I was born, around 2 years, after they left Spain.

9. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 9y

Quoting samsara2

IAbout a half hour of chatting later, he randomly said "You're not Brian Moriarty's sister are you?" at which point I almost fell of my chair. Turns out he was in my brothers class at university.

Some people are amazingly observant. I am not sure I would be able to make connections like this, just by looking at and talking with somebody.

10. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 9y

The guy gave me his email address. He has just been cycling around Australia, for 6 months. He said, when he was married, he did not get to travel, like he wanted, and so wants to do it now.

What makes things even more complicated, is I have not seen my mother, for 7 years. My family have problems, and when my daughter was born, I wanted to make sure she is not involved in these problems.

I have no contact with my family. He has not contact with my family or his wife and children. And he wants me and him to email each other. He and I love traveling and my parents and his wife dont. But, it would be no harm to email him, when I travel, even with the strangeness of the situation, would it?

I wondered how close he came, to being my father. I asked him, if he ever asked my mother out. He said no, a little to quickly.:)