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Why Do Coincidences All Happen at the Same Time? On:0000-00-00 00:00:00

We have a saying in England, in situations when, for instance, some chap is failing miserably to awaken the interest of a young lady "Huh! Chance'd be a fine thing." and chance may well be a fine thing, but coincidence is a pain sometimes, and it's funny how it takes over and everything seems to happen all at once. Often disastrously.
You see Georgia and I recently went on our usual vacation to England, or rather since it was England we went on our holidays, to visit the Aged Mum. She expected to go into hospital with her hip (so much better than going there without her hip) and to be out and at least somewhat about well before we got there. We of course booked our flights a couple of months in advance so inevitably by the time we arrived she was still in hospital, recovering (well) from the operation, but still there. And then, by coincidence, at about the same time she had to have some builders in her house to re-plaster a wall and she again left plenty of time to get the work done before she went in to the hospital, which due to April being the record-setting wettest one for years (after months of drought), didn’t dry in time so she had to leave them with her spare set of keys to finish the job in her hospital-ly absence. Of course taking her own set with her when she went in.
We arrived on the Friday and used the one remaining key, the emergency key to the front door that lives in a little safe by the door, to get in.
Then  even more coincidentally, there was that youth football tournament in Holland that the builder took his team to. And the spare set of keys.
Now my Mum is a stickler for security, so the back door was locked with a deadbolt and even the garden (with its ten-foot wall) had its door locked.
So we were locked out of the back garden and only just not locked out of the entire house, but we had rented a car and we could get her keys once we visited her at the hospital, so no worry. Only we couldn’t---because she couldn’t find them. (Later, much later, it transpired that hers were in her coat pocket, which she’d carefully packed away, for security, with the rest of her belongings).
But we could still get in and out of the front door, and the builder’s daughter eventually called us back, after several messages to the missing man, to tell us he’d be back on the Tuesday. So no real problem, we just had to wait a bit and we’d have full access.
Then there was the Jubilee dress-up party, what we in England call a fancy dress party that my cousins had coincidentally roped us into, and my concomitant decision to go amusingly dressed up as a burglar, complete with mask, striped jersey and bag neatly labelled ‘SWAG’.
We got ready. In costume.
Now, to pause our story for a moment, Georgia is not completely au fait with the intricacies of my mother’s old front door and its only slightly younger Yale lock. She managed to set it to what I think of as the ‘paranoia setting’ which stops the thing opening from the inside without moving the snip into the correct position. Unfortunately with age the snip thing can’t be moved from inside so once it’s set it can only be opened with the key from the outside.
Normally easy to solve, you just go out the back door and round the garden and open it from the front with the key.
Only we couldn’t.
We struggled with the lock for a while.
Found the WD-40.
Sprayed.
Struggled, and struggled a bit more.
Then Georgia had this great idea: climb out of the parlour window.
Well it’s a bit of a drop and of course as the gentleman it was me that had to struggle out, bit by agonising bit.
There I was hanging out of the window: I thought “Hey I’m breaking out of my own home”: I thought “I’m getting old, I won’t be able to do this next year”. I thought “Oh! No the drop is approaching!” I thought “And I’m dressed as a burglar!”
If only that policeman hadn’t been walking past at that precise moment...
Cheerio for now and probably the next four years with time off for good behaviour
from
Richard Howland-Bolton
 



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