Ann had no idea she had a twin, however, when her adoptive mother died she decided to start investigating her maternal family, and after much effort and various dead ends she finally discovered that not only did she have a sister, but that her sister was her twin having been born some twenty minutes before her.
Ann still lives in Aldershot, the town of their birth, while Elizabeth now lives in Albany USA. Last month they met for the first time and obviously
have a lot of catching up to do, and at the age of 78, time is of a premium. You can read the full story here:
I told this story to a group of students and one of them related another story, similarly surprising and one which also tends to give weight to the idea that we all have our destiny and that life is in some way planned in advance. This second tale is not so easy to believe, and were it a plot in a book of fiction one would be forgiven for thinking it was too farfetched to believe, but two different people here in Colombia have assured me that it is a true story.
Two girls met at university in Bogotá, the capital of Colombia and became good friends. One girl invited the other to her house for lunch and to study together. The family was amazed at the similarities between their daughter`s friend and themselves. They discovered that the two girls were born on the same day and at the same hospital. They decided to investigate further and a DNA test confirmed their suspicions. The girls had been mixed at birth and had been brought up by the opposite set of parents.
I believe they have decided to continue living with their non parents, but to start spending more time with their real parents and newly discovered family.
That they didn’t notice the lack of similarities between the parents and the baby in the first years is a little strange, however, what amazes me most is how they finally met at university and became friends as if it were a predetermined, scripted storyline. Imagine the shock for everyone involved and the psychological impact on the families, especially the two girls, to discover after all those years that their parents that presumably they loved so much and loved them were not really their parents.
It wasn’t long before I got a lift with a Brazilian guy, Pedro, who was also hung-over. He was a few years older than me and lived in Paraguay on the border with Brazil. He was a radio ham and was on a two-week holiday visiting people he spoke to frequently on his radio. When we got to the volcano, instead of just dropping me off, he parked the car, climbed up the volcano with me to see the waterfall, bought me lunch and then offered to take me further south to the town of Temuco.
On arrival in Temuco I asked him to leave me in the centre, where I would be able to find one of the cheap hotels mentioned in the backpackers’ bible I was using, namely “South America on a Shoestring.” He told me to relax; picked up the radio he had in his car and spoke to someone with a gritty masculine voice. Soon after a car passed us and he proceeded to follow this car at speed through the streets and out of the centre into the leafy suburbs. After twenty minutes we pulled up outside a middle class suburban house and I was introduced to his friend.
When we finally said our farewells from this wonderful family who looked after us so well, my new found friend said he was driving back to Brazil and asked if I wanted to go with him. I planned to visit Brazil, but there were many other places I wanted to get to know in Chile and Argentina before exploring the Portuguese speaking part of the continent, so I declined his offer. He seemed a tad upset, I guess he wanted the company during the journey, but he took me to the road leading south where I could start hitching and we said goodbye.
Three months later I was walking through the centre of Asuncion in Paraguay at 9, in the morning when I suddenly heard a car horn and someone shouting my name. A car pulled up alongside me and there was Pedro, once again in my life. I had bought a bus ticket to travel to Foz Do Iguaçu on the border with Paraguay and Brazil leaving later that day and it transpired that that was where Pedro lived. He was in Asuncion on business and was returning to Foz in the afternoon so we arranged to meet at the bus station at 5 pm. when my bus arrived. We met without problems and I stayed with him for two weeks in his house close to the border.
In Cardiff, not far from where I used to live as a young boy, is a cemetery which carries the name of the neighbourhood, Cathays. Cathays cemetery dates back to 1859 and so not long ago celebrated its 150th anniversary. A 90 page book commemorating the anniversary entitled Cathays Cemetery Cardiff on its 150th Anniversary was published which is available on Amazon UK.com and at the cemetery.
The cemetery is a wonderful place to visit if you want some peace and quiet, a good walk or to delve into the history of the previous inhabitants of Cardiff. They occasionally offer guided walks which is an interesting way to get to know the cemetery and its history.
In the book there is an interesting and amusing story about a man who was run over by a horse and cart and had to have his leg amputated. He didn’t die, but for some unknown reason decided to have his amputated leg buried at the cemetery. When he eventually died the rest of his body was buried In Penarth about twenty minutes from Cardiff.
Thomas Hardy the English poet and author was also separated at death, his heart being buried at Stinsford along with the remains of his estranged wife Emma, while the ashes of the rest of his body being buried at Poets’ corner in Westminster Abbey.
One of my ancestors is buried at Cathays Cemetery which means members of my family are entitled to be buried there so I hope to be buried there and at the moment I can’t think of any part of me I would like to leave behind here in Colombia or anywhere else. I hope this will be my final destiny.
I recommend you read more about Cathays Cemetery Cardiff here. It’s a very interesting place.
If you would like to receive email notifications of updates to this site click here, fill in the relevant details and press submit.