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An amazing accident and coincidence

No – that’s not my railcard. It’s just a photo of some railcard I found on the net, for illustrative purposes.

So what’s the story? I decided last night that some time today (14th August 2013), I’d attend the Great British Beer Festival.  So, I look for my railcard that give something like a third off rail fares. I can’t find the darn thing!! I take out each one of my cards – some 10 cards – and look through that wallet very carefully;  Looking at each card and behind each. No sign of the railcard in the wallet, for sure. So I then scour the house and my cars. Still no railcard.

Well this morning after almost giving up, I go through my wallet again – and look in every part of the cars that it may be. I also look through all luggage (and compartments in luggage) that I last used some weeks ago. Still no railcard.

So around 15:30 today, I decide that I’d have to purchase a new railcard, because the one that was lost would have expired in mid-November, and it didn’t seem to make sense paying £10 for a replacement. Get this, I’m resigned to the fact that the card is lost.

Right – so I get to the bus station about 1/4  mile from my home, on foot. I board the bus, pay the fare, and get to my seat. I’m clutching some change in my hand which I attempt to put into my leather coin purse. I don’t like coins loose in my pocket (no arguments or debates about that). Some coins fall from the purse by accident, into a small space at the back of one of the seats on the bus. Probably about 15 pence: one 10p coin and some coppers. The bus has not moved off, so I decide to get something to try and nudge the 10p coin out of the small space. I don’t have a screwdriver on me – obviously – so I get this brainwave that I can use one of my cards in my wallet to do this.

I reach for my CAMRA membership card. It just so happens that it’s the easiest one to fetch out of my wallet, and I put it at the top of all the other cards because I’d need to present that to the GBBF, when I get there. So I take the card and put it in the small space behind the seat to nudge the 10p coin out into the aisle. It’s working!! Then.. then… I see a National Railcard pop out from behind the CAMRA card!!!! Ooops – It’s mine!!! Well, I almost could not believe this.

What’s happened is that the Railcard was stuck to the back of my CAMRA card (I’m sure I didn’t do this). Whatever moisture was there, in my wallet kept it stuck neatly through two rounds of me sifting through the cards. It’s only the force of trying to get the 10p coin out from a tight space that, separates the Railcard from the CAMRA card. I would have looked at the back of the CAMRA card twice but took no conscious notice of anything because the magnetic strip appeared in remarkable. I imagine that I would not have thought anything unusual about it – but clearly that magnetic strip must have been the Railcard’s – or so I would assume.

So, I made it down to the GBBF and back and could not get this situation out of my head. I’ve now inspected the Railcard and the CAMRA card. Both are of identical dimension but I can’t get the Railcard to stick back onto the CAMRA card by applying pressure. I know what you’re thinking, ‘that they’ve obviously dried out and that I have a very soggy wallet’. Well no – that’s your overactive imagination, trying to take the mick. That’s factually not the situation. There was no obvious dampness holding the two cards together even when they came apart on the bus. So at the moment the adhesion of the cards is unexplained (or explainable). 

But what’s beating me is this, had the coins not ‘accidentally’ fallen I would have gone to the train station and purchased a new railcard. That’s not all though. It was the position of the CAMRA card in my wallet that assisted. I probably would not have used a credit card but I could have easily reached for another similar membership card.

So what’s going on here? The chain of events is too much:

  1. CAMRA card put in a particular spot to be easily reachable (not surprising because it’s reasonable to do that if you need to have it ready to present).
  2. Coins falling by accident. But coins tend to fall and it’s certainly not the first time this has happened when I’ve boarded a bus. What was unusual is that they fell into an unusually tight space behind a chair. I could not use my fingers or a pen – a pen would have been too thick to get into a space that was about 1.5 mm wide (the barrel of the pen would have prevented the tip from reaching into the crack).
  3. Had the coins fallen on the floor I’d simply have retrieved them without need to resort to a card.

I’ve gotten as far as thinking that when I was flipping through the lot twice at home,  my ‘unconscious’ must have realised that the writing on the back of the CAMRA card, did not match and belonged to the was the Railcard. I can buy that. But what’s hard to accept is that the ‘unconscious’ would engineer an ‘accident’ that was so complicated, to save me from spending money unnecessarily. That’s possible but seemingly unheard of before now.

Well, the religious would say that God intervened. What the religious don’t know is that God, and I do not see eye to eye, I’m not one of God’s favourites because I hold him/her to account for all the mess-ups in the world that s/he has allowed, or been blind to. So – I’d say God theories are out.  I’m more inclined to think that the ‘unconscious’ has orchestrated a sequence of events and even the accidental dropping of the coins.

I’d still wrestle to think that it could be that specific to cause me to drop the coins in such an unusually tight space.  If the unconscious is truly that good at ‘its tricks’ then it means that much of our conscious existence is a facade. We are actually living like puppets to an unseen master. Amazingly by pure coincidence I was watching a BBC documentary on some unconscious workings of the mind a few days ago.

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