I had a dream. One of those ones which are slightly alarming in that they come true. In my dream a friend happily announced she was pregnant and when I chanced to bump into her the next day, she told me — excitedly — the good news.

Ah, thought I. That’s funny, I just dreamt she was gravid and now she is. I told her I knew already, and related my snippet of dream. I think she was impressed.

A few days later her good man rang up and we chatted away for a while, then he expressed mild amazement over my incredible abilities to see into the future. “So you must be having to reassess your sceptical position on this one then Annette?” he asked.

I thought for a bit and told him no, not at all. We humans are talented at spotting connections or patterns, even where no causal link exists. Of all the dreams I’ve had, this is the first one to come true, that I know of. And only one bit of it — I didn’t, for instance, tell my friends that seconds after relating their news in my dream, they both turned into penguins and waddled off to get ice cream. That bit didn’t come true. We are, I said, selective in what we choose to focus on and record only the hits, or bits of them. The misses go right out the window.

That I should dream my friend was pregnant is not at all surprising. I knew she was keen on the idea of another child, my mind whipped this up with a penguin or two and the timing was spot on. What is more, out of the three years I’ve known her, she has already been pregnant for a quarter of that time, with her first child. So the idea of her being pregnant is hardly a strange one.

I’ve long been aware that people have what they regard as prophetic dreams, and have never considered that they required a supernatural explanation. There’s no reason for me to change my view just because I’ve experienced the phenomenon myself.

I probably should have mentioned William of Occam and his razor. Or how, when you hear hoof beats in the night, don’t think zebras, instead wonder — with some justification — what that cat is bringing in to the house now.

Anyway, it’s late and I need to turn in. To sleep, perchance to dream, possibly of winning Lotto numbers or, more likely, of penguins.

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