Suzy Snapper
Thursday, September 21, 2006
It's A Small World After All
I am constantly reminded that the world can be a very small place. Whether it be in business, in family, in personal life.

That whole 'six degrees of separation' thing? I believe it wholeheartedly.

When I was 7, I was in Hawaii with my family. I remember walking along the beach and running into a friend from school that had moved away the year previous. A chance meeting that at the time I seemed too young to realize the odds of.

Similar in future trips later on. Disneyland, 1982 - my brother's old friend who he had lost contact with. In Hawaii in '92, meeting up with an old teacher.

One of the big coincidences and one that defied most odds happened during my travels in South Africa. I was meeting my then-boyfriend's family and he took me to meet his sister at Rhodes University. In her dorm room, a girl walks in...a girl I'd met during my previous travels to Europe. She and I stared at each other dumbfounded. She knew her dormmate's brother had met a Canadian girl when he was in Europe but never thought it could possibly be the same Canadian she'd met.

I have come to the conclusion that whereever I go now there will be some link to some section of my life. I'm not sure if I'm the exception or whether this happens to everyone though.

At my previous job, one of the other employees' daughter was a good friend of my nieces. I'd heard my niece refer to an 'Amanda' but never thought more of it. Not to mention another person there had a cabin two lots down from my other brother's property. He'd helped my brother chop wood just the week before we'd realized this. In true male fashion, only knowing each other's first names and not bothering with the last.

Yesterday, two incidents happened that made me once again feel like this world consists of only a handful of people.

I joined a Scrapbooking group forum. It had some great photography hints and seemed to be a great source of support and techniques. I'd been reading on and off for a while, and noted there were 935 members in the group from all over the world. Imagine my surprise when the wife of an ex-coworker of mine popped up. Someone I'd met and spent time with. We had actually been emailing back and forth for the past few days regarding a project for her side cakery business. Very bizarre.

About the same time, I got an email from a coworker that had heard about me doing the photography for his high school reunion on Saturday. While I've only been at this company for a few months, I haven't really had the chance to get to know too many people. His name seemed vaguely familiar but only in such a way that reading a more unusual surname might. Turns out not only was he the year ahead of me in high school and grew up on the street next to mine, he used to hang out in front of our family bakery waiting for the day olds. I remembered his first name, but hadn't clued in to his last.

I used to be shaken when I heard of these coincidences, but I've been now learning to take them in stride.

Vancouver, British Columbia
A patriotic Canadian full of visions of a better Canada, random thoughts and a lot of hot air. Who am I? A struggling writer and photographer trapped in a corporate buyer's body. Steel shopping by day, and freeflowing prose by night. One day I hope to have the nights become my days, but am intimidated by the sheer amount of people who share my dream. So I read. A lot. I learn. A lot. I push myself. A lot. The world is a small place, and getting smaller every day. I'm proud to have friends in every corner of the earth, and abide by the old adage that there are no strangers, only friends we haven't met yet.
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