Wednesday, March 08, 2006

(57) Orbis

In mid 1990 I wrote to the author Stan Gooch about the incident involving his book The Paranormal and William Hartston which is outlined in Coincidences and which appears here in points (46) - (51) of in Part Two: The Narrative, Epilogues and Appendices .

I ended with "It’s a funny old world, mate."

Around the same time I sent a similar letter to the writer Colin Wilson.

I received a reply from him a few weeks later saying that he had just returned from a visit to London to see a publisher and that he had therefore not yet had the time to review my letter in depth, but that he was most grateful to have received it.

Not long after that I was contacted by a London publisher called Orbis who said that Stan Gooch had passed on my letter to them and that they were planning soon to publish a magazine "rather along the lines of The Unexplained, which you may remember from the 1970s, looking at various unusual and paranormal phenomena."

Apparently Gooch was a member of the editorial board of this proposed magazine and had suggested that some of my coincidence material should be published in it.

Accordingly I posted off a copy of the material to Orbis, but then they notified me that there had been some setbacks and that plans to publish the magazine were held in abeyance.

However they added that my material had made its way, via them, into the hands of Colin Wilson, but without any prompting from me.

In September 1991 I noticed copies of a magazine called The Unexplained on newsagents’ stands in London, and reasoned that this might be the delayed Orbis publication.

At 1:30 p.m. on October 10th 1991 I opened a copy of this magazine in a London newsagents and saw that indeed it was published by Orbis (Latin for ‘world’).

At 2:55 that afternoon I noticed that a fax had been written by one of my fellow telesalesmen, Edward Heaton, to be sent to a Polish travel company called Orbis.
I had heard him an hour earlier talking to this company by phone.
He told me that they were a large travel firm with fifty-seven hotels.
One of its employees had told him that Orbis was an acronym. I could not think of any other company of that name that I had ever heard of.

Later Wilson was to tell me that the company he had been seeing in London in 1990 when first I wrote to him about the Gooch/Hartston events was Orbis.

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