Felix with Cristóbal, who by great coincidence knew my friend Manuel in Colorado!

Small World Coincidences: A String of Serendipitous Encounters

Have you ever experienced a series of coincidences that left you in awe of the world’s smallness? That’s what happened to me in the last eleven months. I was fortunate enough to have five el mundo es un pañuelo moments that reminded me of how connected we all are.

Barcelona rendezvous

My fiancée Andrea and I went to Barcelona, only to learn that a buddy’s girlfriend from Texas was also in the city for a work trip. To our surprise, she was staying in a hotel just one kilometer away from ours.

We ended up having breakfast together before Andrea and I left town.

Chance encounter in a small town

In August, I volunteered at VaughanTown, an English immersion program in a tiny Spanish town called Abánades (population: 30). Here, I met a student named Cristóbal (shown in the featured photo of this post). In the midst of a conversation, we discovered that he was a friend of my buddy Manuel of Fort Collins, Colorado. They went to university together ten years ago in Córdoba!

Fort Collins reunion in Kauai, Hawaii

In September, Andrea and I met with my friend Dave, who used to live in Fort Collins. The day before the Kauai Marathon, we participated in a group training run led by Tyler McCandless, another athlete from Fort Collins. He’s even on the board of directors of the Fort Collins Running Club like I was.

Tyler, Felix, Dave, and Andrea after a Fun Run the day before the Kauai Marathon.
Tyler, Felix, Dave, and Andrea after a Fun Run the day before the Kauai Marathon.

Surprise meeting in Lagos, Portugal

After hiking the Rota Valentina in Lagos, Portugal with friends, I received a message from my friend Josh of Fort Collins. He saw on Strava that I was in Lagos. What was funny was he and his wife were vacationing there too! I had not even heard of Lagos until a few days prior. Yet, we had a chance to meet up for dinner that evening in this small Portuguese town.

Like Tyler mentioned above, Josh is also an FCRC board member!

Right after we sat down, I got a message on Strava from my friend Josh, who I know from Fort Collins, Colorado. By complete coincidence, he and his wife Adrienne were in Lagos too! I invited them to come out for dinner.
Right after we sat down, I got a message on Strava from my friend Josh, who I know from Fort Collins, Colorado. By complete coincidence, he and his wife Adrienne were in Lagos too! I invited them to come out for dinner.

Connecting at the airport

On my way back to Spain on January 2, I had a layover in Dallas at the DFW airport. To my surprise 15 minutes after landing, I received a message from my friend Sayuri of Chihuahua, Mexico, who was also at the airport for a connection. Neither of us had any idea in advance that we’d be at DFW at the same time. We were able to catch up for 15 minutes.

Sayuri, a HelloTalk friend, and I inside Terminal C of the Dallas-Fort Worth airport. By complete coincidence, we had flight connections at DFW at the same time.
Sayuri, a HelloTalk friend, and I inside Terminal C of the Dallas-Fort Worth airport. By complete coincidence, we had flight connections at DFW at the same time.

These small world encounters left me in awe and reminded me of how connected we all are. It’s amazing how the world can feel small when we least expect it.

Which one of the above do you think was the most remarkable coincidence?

Felix with Cristbal, who by great coincidence knew my friend Manuel in Colorado!