ISLAND BEACH STATE PARK, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — A message in a bottle sent bobbing across the ocean from a New Jersey beach completed its trans-Atlantic voyage in Europe and now thanks to social media, the senders and the receiver of the message are connected.

Just how far a message in a bottle can go was beyond the wildest dreams of Tommy Zanowic and Bridget Braaten, who two years ago tossed a glass bottle with a note inside into the ocean at the Jersey shore.

They never imagined the bottle would make it far and didn’t even sign the note inside.

“We just thought that someone would find it and be like, ‘you left your bottle here,'” Braaten of Toms River told CBS2’s Steve Langford.

They had left Zanowic’s college dorm address on the message, but never thought about it again until this week when Loyola University in Maryland contacted them saying someone had found their message in a bottle in France.

The bottle floated 3,376 miles from Island Beach State Park in New Jersey to Ile Tariec in France.

“Can’t believe that it went all the way to France, it doesn’t make any sense,” said Zanowic of Brick.

David Folley spoke to CBS2 from his home in western France, showing the bottle he found on the beach this past Sunday.

In the seaweed and the sand, Folley said he spotted it, then took it home to open. The message in the bottle, just barely legible Folley said, was a simple line from his unlikely long distance correspondents that read: “Write to us about your good fortunes.”

Folley said it was crazy and unbelievable. On the other side of the Atlantic, there was reflection about the meaning of this special delivery.

“It really says something about how the world can connect with one another,” said Zanowic.

The senders and the receiver of the message in the bottle are communicating on social media and said they hope to meet in person one day soon.


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