CUMBERLAND, Maine -- Three years ago a teen from Cumberland put a message in a bottle and threw it into the the ocean off Monhegan Island. To her surprise, last week, a handwritten letter arrived from a fisherman in Spain saying he found her bottle.
"I think it's really cool," said Terra Gallo.
Gallo, and her younger sister Nola were visiting their aunt on Monhegan when they decided to put messages in bottles and throw them into the ocean. Enough time had passed that Terra forgot all about the bottles. Now fourteen, she was happily surprised to learn a fisherman out catching hake plucked her bottle out of the ocean.
Terra looked at maps of ocean currents and believes the bottle has traveled more than three thousand miles from the Gulf Stream to the North Atlantic Drift and the Canary Current.
"At first, we were really surprised, wow, all the way to Spain, and when we looked at ocean current then it made sense that it went that way," said Terra.
Susan Gallo, Terra's mother, says in a time of so much electronic communication it's meaningful to get a handwritten letter and she hopes it inspires their family to write more letters.
In his letter to Terra the fisherman wrote, "I hope you are as thrilled to receive this letter as I was when I found your bottle and I hope we'll receive more answers when I return the bottle to the sea."
Terra had asked that whoever found her bottle put in their own letter with hers and send it back to the ocean. The fisherman says he did that, so now the bottle with two messages, continues its journey.