Small worlds

I spent a couple of days at Kansas University in congenial Lawrence during the week. I flew back to Columbus from Kansas City airport on Thursday evening. However, I did not see my soon-to-be colleague Andrew Pace who was apparently in the airport at the same time .....

When travelling I do sometimes wonder about the chances of unexpectedly meeting people at airports, those hubs of massive people flows. There must be studies somewhere about this. I rarely bump into anyone, though ....

Comments: 1

Jan 08, 2008
JBNye

I've had two serendipitous airport encounters over several decades of traveling, both now well in the past. The first: at Chicago's O'Hare airport, where I spotted a professional colleague -- at a time unrelated to ALA or other library conferences. The second: at Dallas-Fort Worth, where I crossed paths with my best friend from childhood, by then living on the other coast. We were always in touch by phone and email but neither realized the other would be flying through DFW that day.

I'm surprised it doesn't happen more often, given the frequency with which many of us travel. I've been consciously avoiding flying through ORD, DFW, JFK, ATL in favor of regional hubs where possible. I'd guess these chance enounters are more likely at the largest airports -- but as those are more crowded, you're less likely to actually see each other? Perhaps twitter will yield some useful data...