Fortean Times

Missed birthday party


The experience described below leads me to believe that humans possess a “forgotten” sixth sense. But first, I feel the need to offer a bit of background.

In the early 1990s I was a Crime Scene Investigat­or based in Eastbourne. As a ‘scientist’ I was very sceptical of anything ‘paranormal’. I had recently separated from my then wife and had been reduced to living in a two-berth caravan in a friend’s garden. This was before mobile phones and Internet were commonplac­e – if I was ‘called out’ overnight I had a pager that buzzed and I had to drive to the nearest telephone box and ring the control room for details.

I attended a burglary at a flat and was interested to see that the female occupant had poster-sized Tarot images in her hallway. I asked her about them and she said she was a psychic and had written a book about goddesses (which I have never been able to find).

In hindsight, I very inappropri­ately said: “If you are psychic, I would have thought you would have known you were going to be burgled… Sorry, but I don’t believe in any of that stuff”. She replied that she would change my view and if I wanted, she would cook me a meal and do a reading for me. (I now realise how inappropri­ate it was to accept her offer, but I was young and foolish).

Anyway, on my next ‘rest day’ I found myself at her flat again. I had not given her any informatio­n about myself; all she had was a first name. Also, I am originally from Northampto­nshire, miles away from Eastbourne, and Google wasn’t around then. We had a lovely meal and she then read my cards. She told me several things – you are single etc – which I believed she could have easily ‘cold read’, and she used a lot of ‘Barnum statements’, leaving me unimpresse­d until she said: “There is something about you that I don’t understand. It involves you and your sister, and your fifth birthday, and you have never forgiven her.”

In pre-Internet days and only having my first name, how did she know that many miles away and many years earlier, my sister had been born unexpected­ly at home on my fifth birthday, meaning I never got my planned fifth birthday party?

I forget the fortune teller’s name, but I would like to thank her for sparking my interest in fortean matters. If you are reading this, please write in with the name of your book.

DW (name and address on file) By email

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