HAWAII, KOMPAS.com – A letter in a bottle issued 37 years ago by a Japanese high school student has finally been found, some 6,000 kilometers away in Hawaii.
Members of the natural science club at Choshi High School in Chiba, east of Tokyo, released 750 bottles into the ocean during 1984-1985 to study ocean currents.
The bottle, which contains messages in English, Japanese and Portuguese, asks the inventor to contact the sender.
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The bottled letters washed up in places as far away as the Philippines, Canada, and Alaska.
However, nothing has been found since the 50th bottle was discovered in 2002 in Kagoshima Prefecture, southwest Japan.
The 51st bottle was discovered by a nine-year-old girl on a Hawaiian beach in June 2021, and announced by Choshi High.
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There are postcard-sized messages that are still mostly legible.
“I was really shocked,” deputy principal Jun Hayashi told AFP, Friday (17/9/2021).
“The 50th bottle was discovered 19 years ago, so I thought it was complete. I didn’t think it would be found again — I thought it was all sunk.”
“It is very interesting that the 51st was found.”
Hayashi also hoped that someone would find the 52nd bottle.
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The club that released the bottle disbanded in 2007.
However, the school said two student representatives planned to send a letter and a mini-flag to the inventor of the 51st bottle, who the Hawaii Tribune-Herald newspaper referred to as Abbie Graham.
Mayumi Kondo, a member of the natural sciences club in 1984, said the discovery of the 51st bottle brought back nostalgic memories of her school days.
“37 years is a long time for humans, but on the other hand, it really pushes home how big and mysterious the Earth and nature really are,” he said.
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