Today I had a quite surreal déjà vu moment. While not a new sensation for me, today’s déjà vu experience was quite real. Before I tell you about my experience today, I will give you the Wikipedia explanation of déjà vu.
Déjà vu (pronounced /ˈdeɪʒɑː ˈvuː/ ( listen); French: [deʒa vy] ( listen), “already seen”; also called paramnesia, from Greek παρα “para,” “near, against, contrary to” + μνήμη “mnēmē,” “memory”) or promnesia, is the experience of feeling sure that one has witnessed or experienced a new situation previously (an individual feels as though an event has already happened or has happened in the recent past), although the exact circumstances of the previous encounter are uncertain. The term was coined by a French psychic researcher, Émile Boirac (1851–1917) in his book L’Avenir des sciences psychiques (“The Future of Psychic Sciences”), which expanded upon an essay he wrote while an undergraduate. The experience of déjà vu is usually accompanied by a compelling sense of familiarity, and also a sense of “eeriness”, “strangeness”, or “weirdness”. The “previous” experience is most frequently attributed to a dream, although in some cases there is a firm sense that the experience “genuinely happened” in the past.
So, about todays experience. Let me set the scene. I had just arrived in Hervey Bay. It was my second ever visit and my first alone having been here in November, 2009. I had just checked into the hotel, which I had never been in before. I received a phone call from a work colleague who I have spoken to just once before. I sat down on the couch in the hotel room and was looking out over the marina and particularly at a big yellow boat. My feet were up on the coffee table (the maids can clean it tomorrow if they think to, you would do it too!). The conversation is a new one and a little work sensitive so me detailing it here is not really relevant anyway. I was midway through the conversation when the déjà vu feeling smacked me full on like a freight train. I was certain this exact setting and conversation regarding this exact work issue had been discussed before with me looking out at the big yellow boat and with my feet on the coffee table. How is this possible? This is a brand new job, a brand new hotel (for me to stay at), a brand new work colleague. It isn’t like I have stayed here before or had this conversation with this person before yet I had the strongest déjà vu experience which I can’t explain.
Experiencing déjà vu is something which is not foreign to me but it seems to be increasing in frequency in the last couple of years. Is this because I am getting older and therefore having more experiences which are similar to previous experiences I have had? Perhaps. Not todays though. Totally new setting. Totally new players. Totally new conversation. There is no possible way I had ever had this conversation before.
I wonder if my déjà vu experiences will increase as I get older. I am sure most of them can be explained. Some will not be able to though. I think I am becoming a believer in this phenomen.
So what does this mean? Was it an experience of déjà vu? Was it something else? I can’t explain it. What are your thoughts? Have you had a case of déjà vu that you can’t explain? What do you think déjà vu is? Is it like a glitch in the system as per The Matrix? I am really keen to hear what you have to say.