Once, about ten years ago or so, I witnessed something quite out of the ordinary while I was driving up Meadowlands Drive, in Ottawa. It was late at night and I had a friend in the car with me who also witnessed the event. As I was heading east on Meadowlands, approaching the intersection of Meadowlands and Prince of Wales, an odd light appeared in the sky. It appeared directly in front of us, from out of nowhere, and looked as though it fell straight down to earth at a pretty good speed. It looked to be something in a free-fall, from a high altitude.
“Did you see that?” I asked my friend.
“Yeah! That was weird.” He replied.
“That was one of the strangest meteors I’ve ever seen.” I answered back.
I was sure that we’d just witnessed some sort of meteor — possibly a bolide — make its decent to earth. I logged the event firmly into memory, because that particular meteor had characteristics that I’d never seen in a meteor before. This meteor was pure white, quite large (for a meteor), and left no trail whatsoever. If you’re familiar with the night-sky, the best way I could describe it to you would be to say that it looked almost exactly as if Venus had just decided to fall out of the sky. Do you know what Venus looks like in the sky? Well, picture it moving very, very quickly (about as quickly as your average meteor tends to travel), straight down towards the horizon. That’s what I saw that night.
Now, you have to understand that when it comes to such matters, I’m far from a novice. I’ve had a ravenous interest in astronomy my entire life. I’ve spent untold hours, upon hours, upon hours star gazing and studying the night sky. I’ve seen thousands upon thousands of shooting stars. For ten years after that event, I never suspected that what I had witnessed was anything other than a meteor. It displayed characteristics that I had never before witnessed in a meteor. However, I have witnessed other meteors that also displayed unique characteristics. I once saw a meteor that left a huge trail shoot across the sky and then seem to freeze in mid air. Its trail hung in the night sky, motionless, for a good five or six seconds slowly changing colors from blue, to green, to red, to yellow, before finally fading from site. I’ve seen a bolide break apart and form 3 or 4 trailer meteors. I even once saw a meteor streak from almost one horizon to the other with its trail seemingly blinking on and off. I’ve seen blue meteors, greenish meteors and even at least one redish meteor. But, I had never before seen a meteor exactly as the one that I witnessed on that night.
For ten years I’ve always just assumed that it was nothing more than a meteor that I had witnessed. Yes, it was an unusually large and exceptionally bright meteor. Yes, it was pure white in colour. Yes, it appeared to fall straight down to earth as opposed to shooting across the sky. But, I know that meteors can sometimes display some peculiar characteristics. And, I know that if something is shooting across the sky, directly aligned with your line of sight, it can give the illusion that it is falling straight down, when in fact it isn’t. So, I never really thought anything of it. I just chalked it up as the spotting of a really cool and unusual meteor.
So what’s so strange about a meteor displaying a unique set of characteristics like this one?
Well, last night, Anna and I were driving up Prince of Wales drive. It was night-time… for all I know, it could have been exactly the same time of night that I witnessed that meteor ten or so years ago (all I remember for certain about the time was that it was dark out) We were traveling south on Prince of Wales, approaching the intersection at Prince of Wales and Meadowlands Drive. We were literally less than maybe 200 feet from the very spot where I witnessed that meteor fall from the sky ten years ago, when both Anna and I, witnessed THE EXACT SAME EVENT!
Yes, it happened again. Ten years or so later. I’m telling you, that last night I saw a “meteor” fall to earth when I was less than perhaps a couple hundred feet from where I witnessed that strange meteor ten or so years ago. And, the “meteor” I saw last night, looked and behaved in EXACTLY the same way as the first one. It seemed to be the same brightness, the same size, the same colour, moving at the same speed… and it appeared to fall straight down to earth, as opposed to shooting across the sky. I absolutely shit you not!
Now, here’s the kicker. The only thing that was different about this meteor, was the part of the sky that it appeared in. But, here’s the really weird thing: I was traveling south this time, instead of east, as I was traveling the last time. IF this object that we saw fall last night, whatever it was, was falling close to us (within a mile or two, I estimate) and we had been in the exact same location as I had been when I witnessed the first one, then we would have seen it as falling in the exact same location as the last one as well.
Very odd. Very, very odd. What was it that I saw? Was each of these objects just highly peculiar meteors, and I have just been witness to one of the greatest coincidences that I will likely ever experience in my lifetime? Or, were these objects something else?