Missing Woman Finds Herself

The notion that real-life can be “stranger than fiction” has become a cliché. Yet it’s no less true for being so.

Examples abound.

Here is one of my favourites. The story did the rounds on the wire services when it broke a few years ago. It’s not as outlandish or crazy as some real-life tales, but it encapsulates something poignant. The text is taken from Outside online.

A woman reported missing from a tour to the Eldgjá volcanic canyon in southern Iceland ended up joining the search party formed to find her. The mix-up occurred when the woman left the tour bus and changed clothing. When she returned, the other tourists didn’t recognize her and began to worry about the missing passenger. Going off of the bus driver’s description, a search was organized for an Asian woman in dark clothing who spoke English well. The missing woman didn’t recognize the description of herself and joined in the search. The following day, as the coast guard prepared to send a search helicopter, the woman realized her mistake. Sveinn K. Rúnarsson, chief of police in Hvolsvöllur, said that the woman simply didn’t recognize the description of herself and “had no idea that she was missing.”