Synchronicity is a concept, introduced by analytical psychologist Carl Jung, which holds that events are “meaningful coincidences” if they occur with no causal relationship yet seem to be meaningfully related. I am always surprised when having random conversations, how often meaningful coincidences occur.
One day, a few years ago, I got out of my car on Mainstreet, I was going to Chinook Pharmacy. As I walked down the sidewalk a group of people were looking at some old photos in the window at the former Peninsula College building. I could have walked on by but instead stopped and asked if I could help or answer a question.
One of the men in the group said he had lived in Forks when he was a child and his mother had worked at the restaurant inside the Woodland Hotel. I asked his name and it was Grant Hansen and I asked where he had lived, he had lived on what is now Wood St., I then told him … he was my neighbor when I was a baby!
We exchanged email addresses, I later sent him photos of the Woodland/Evergreen Cafe as he had none of his mother’s former workplace. Later I invited him and his wife to the annual FHS All Class Reunion, which he attended this past April and had a great time!
Last spring I was at first beach in La Push for the Quileute Welcome the Whales ceremony. I was standing with Lissy Andros, and Linda Offutt and a woman approached us to ask about Lissy’s dog who was also with us. We began to visit and she asked some questions about the area and there was just general chit-chat and then she said that as an educator in Olympia she had worked with a very promising film student in the 1970s. He had made a little documentary and then was tragically killed by a drunk driver. She then said you probably have never heard of it but it was called …and we all three said “Cuts”! I then explained that I had written several articles about the film and we watch it almost every Hickory Shirt/Heritage days.
A few weeks ago I was interviewing Betty and Guy Decker prior to their appearance in the 4th of July parade. Betty had some pictures on the table, several of a man in front of a huge one log loaded log truck. She shared that they had moved to Montana and when they met their nearest neighbor, who lived quite a ways away, he had shared these photos of a relative of his that had once lived in Forks! Betty said the mans’ last name was Hansen.
Later it hit me that it might be Grant’s dad in the photo, it was and he has never seen these photos before. He will soon have copies of the photos.
On Monday Brett Partridge brought in some photos of the snow from the 1996-1997 big snow (see page 16) and as I was scanning them he said that his family had donated a bunch of old newspapers to the Clallam County Historical Society. His great grandfather, A. J. Cosser had been the editor of the Democrat Leader, it was published 1893-1905, I told him I had read them all! I also shared that I had Cosser’s in my family tree. After a little more conversation I realized that I have a second cousin that shares great grandparents with Brett!
Last week a man was trying to find one final piece of info about his great-grandfather, Seth Davis. Davis had been the Post Master at Shuwah around 1900 and died in Forks in 1904. After my conversation with Brett, I thought … maybe the Democrat Leader had mentioned it? Even though it was printed in Port Angeles, it had other county news as well. Sure enough, I found a few paragraphs regarding Davis’ death and shared it with his descendant.
So one day I was in the meat department at Forks Outfitters and I struck up a conversation with a fellow shopper. She said she had just moved to Forks and was originally from San Francisco, so I shared that my great-grandparents had lived in San Francisco in 1906 during the big earthquake. We talked a bit about earthquakes and then she said, “I am going to have to get used to how friendly you people are.” So I left her alone …
Some days it feels like everything in life is linked. From the past to the present and future — every day we have so many opportunities for meaningful coincidences. It is all about synchronicity when people and things happen at an exact moment.
To that woman in the meat department …I think she missed a great opportunity for a meaningful coincidence!