KEY LARGO, Fla. (FOX 13) - It is journey that reached thousands of miles and lasted decades.
A message in a bottle was dropped into the ocean by second graders in Scotland more than 30 years ago. It washed ashore near a Key Largo home in the wake of Hurricane Irma.
“We are learning all about pirates. We would like to see how far this message goes,” the message read. “Please write and tell us where you found the bottle.”
The note in the bottle was signed, “Class 213, Chapelpark School” in Forfar, Angus, Scotland, meaning it had traveled more than 4,000 miles.
Ruth and Lee Huenniger, of Key Largo, found the bottle while they were out inspecting streets lights after Hurricane Irma last year, and they decided to write back.
“I thought, ‘Let’s see if this gets all the way back to Scotland,'” Ruth told Fox affiliate WSVN-TV in Miami. “I mean, I’d never heard of Forfar.”
However, it turned out the school no longer existed, and closed back in 2008, the Miami Herald reported. The postman brought the letter to the area’s new school instead, where its staff forwarded it to a retired schoolteacher, Fiona Cargill.
Cargill spoke to WSVN, telling the local news station, “We just wanted to see how far it would go.”
She said she led the activity at the school and found a class photo showing her students dressed as pirates. Those students are now probably nearing the age of 40.
“We decided that perhaps pirates would send messages in bottles,” she told WSVN. “They covered them with sticky plastic to keep them from getting wet, put them in bottles and then got a fisherman to put them in the North Sea,” she recalled.
She also said there are three more bottles out there, and the Huennigers said they will be keeping an eye out for them.