We all experience moments and interactions that are just meant to be and many are fleeting.
We all experience moments and interactions that are just meant to be and many are fleeting. iStock

Serendipity can set you on a new path in life

Following on from Nick's article last week about journeying back to Central Australia where we met and visiting some of our favourite locations, we are now coming to the end of our adventure and we've had a wonderful time exploring again 25 years on.

I'd forgotten how remote the region is. It creates a sense of disconnection from the rest of the country and the world compared to "normal'' life, particularly as we had limited internet or phone signal for a few days. That can be a concern when you run your own business but it also offers the perfect opportunity to slow down, switch off and reflect. It was bliss!

That disconnection allowed us to truly reconnect with the land we both love but also catch up with old friends including a visit to the learning centre in a community near Kings Canyon set up by a tour guide friend through his foundation to support schooling for Aboriginal children within their own community.

And then there was the unexpected.

Another ex-tour guide friend who we hadn't seen for 19 years happened to be in the area and we briefly caught up with him. While chatting to him, Nick saw someone he had trained with in the NZ police force 40 years ago. Just like that, he and his wife happened to be walking into the resort at the same time - what are the chances. Fast forward to Alice and checking into our hotel today there was another tour guide friend who we hadn't seen for many years - serendipity at its best.

Serendipity or "the occurrence and development of events by chance in a happy or beneficial way'' is like that. None of that could have been planned, it was one of those moments which are just supposed to happen.

The other unexpected and really significant thing for me for this week was the depth of feeling and connection I had at seeing and being in the presence of Uluru again after so long. I couldn't immediately express why I felt so moved, but in retrospect I realised the enormity of that morning 25 year ago when I sat on top of that extraordinary red rock at sunrise contemplating my life and wondering what lay ahead. I knew that I had to make some major changes in my life but had no idea where they would take me.

Another serendipitous moment.

Clearly I was meant to be there that morning and being there changed everything in an instant in a way I had never imagined. When I look back at all of the choices and decisions I made along the way that placed me there that morning and consider that Nick was not planning to climb that day, I realise things could have been very different.

We all experience moments and interactions that are just meant to be and many are fleeting. We can't plan them and we aren't aware of them in advance yet they make all the difference to our life and that of others.

Rowena Hardy is a facilitator and coach at mindsaligned.com.au