I had to write this while it was fresh in my mind. Unless you watched the Today this Sunday morning, the names Joe Parker and Rick Hill won't mean anything, but it's an amazing story. A story that validated why I believe in fate. Joe and Rick, two guys in their thirties who were both raised in Massachusetts actually share the same father, but they never knew each other.
Joe was placed in the foster system as a tot and Rick lived in the next small town. Somewhere along the line Rick learned that he had a half-brother, but never tried to find him because he didn't have a clue where to start.
Fast forward. It's 2011 and Rick and his family took a trip to Hawaii. They weren't staying near Wakikki Beach, but rather on the other side of the island. For some reason, Rick said he didn't know why, they circled the island that day and took a walk on the beach. Rick, his wife and kids stopped to pose for some photos with the surf in the background. A typical tourist thing to do. Mom or Dad takes the shot while everyone says cheese. This time something different happened.
Enter 38 year old Joe, who had moved to Hawaii and was working in the hospitality industry. So he's walking along the same beach, sees the family taking photos and offers to take a shot of all of them. As Joe said, "I'm in the hospitality industry now so I decided to be hospitable." While they were talking, they both noticed the New England accents, and as people from the same area often do, each asked the other where he was from. Turned out they lived one small town apart.
Then they exchanged names of people they knew. That's when the world stood still. One of the names was their mutual father. The half-brothers had found each other through a quirk of fate. Why was Rick at Wakikki Beach that day when he never intended to go there? What prompted Joe to move to Hawaii and how did he wind up on the same stretch of beach at exactly the time his half-brother and his family were taking their vacation shot? What prompted him to offer to take a photo?
No one can really answer those questions, but it's why I believe in fate.