Sadly, my older sister passed away December 2010 from a 2 year battle with ovarian cancer. In her will she left me her condo in San Diego. About a year later (last December) my fiance and I were staying at the condo to pack her things up and to decide what got donated and what we would keep. A beautiful floor-standing grandfather clock my mom had given me upon her death back in 1987 that used London's old Big Ben chiming sounds at the 15-minute intervals was positioned in the front entryway. (Years back I had dropped off the clock at my sister's condo for her to keep the clock since I wasn't settled down yet and was still moving around, and I didn't want to scratch or break it in the many moves I was making). Per usual, the clock was not running (my sister had told me many times she never ran it because the chimes kept her awake) and we hadn't noticed -- nor cared --what time it had last stopped at.
One day when we were packing for a Salvation Army donation pickup my fiance and I were rushing around because we had scheduled a pickup for 2 PM and were frantically trying to get everything together before they showed up with the truck. Because we had traveled from a different time zone which was one hour ahead of San Diego time, and had not bothered to set our watches, we were using our home time, an hour ahead. At the same time, there weren't any other working clocks in the condo (one was a wind-up, but it had run down and stopped that morning.) This forced us to mistakenly assume it was going on 2 PM when it was actually going on 1 PM local time -- unbeknownst to us giving us another hour to get the boxes packed before the movers arrived and making our need to rush frantically around completely unnecessary.
Suddenly, when we were both about to lose it because of our frantic rushing to pack, the grandfather clock in the entryway, which had not been running, launched into its Big Ben melody, chiming the 1 PM hour -- the exact time it actually was! Shocked, I walked over to it and, sure enough, it was indeed running -- the pendulum was swinging and it was, in fact, chiming the 1 o'clock hour. Of course, we both realized we still had an hour before the movers arrived, and while shocked the clock had inexplicably gone off, breathed a sigh of relief that we had more time.
Now I ask you, the reader: Was this my sister reminding me of the correct San Diego time, and alerting us to the fact that we still had another hour to pack before the movers got there and to stop rushing around like idiots, or was it some sort of coincidence? Knowing what a stickler my sister had been in life over details, the time of the day being one, I tend to think it was the former.
However, I do posess a practical mind, and I understand that there exist occurrances of many small ongoing tremors in the San Diego area due to its location on active faultlines, and that one of these tremors could have possibly started the clock's pendulum to start swinging, but, how in the world does a practical mind explain the fact that the clock started up right at the exact, correct local time, and at a time when our knowing the real time was so consequential?
When I really give it some thought I have to say, "Thanks, sis."