10-year-old's note makes 2,621-kilometre voyage by sea
Brigitte Bjarnason and her 22-year-old son Sven hold the Newfoundland message they uncovered from a plastic bottle in Iceland. — Submitted photo
Twelve years after then-10-year-old Colin Greene released a message in a bottle off the coast of Newfoundland, an Icelandic woman, Brigitte Bjarnason, is searching for its sender.
"Last year, when I walked with my son and husband along the south coast of Iceland, we found an ugly-looking (plastic bottle) in the sand pretty far from the shore," Bjarnason wrote in an email.
"Something white, which looked like a piece of paper, was in the bottle and we tried to get it out.
"It was a letter from a 10-year-old boy from St. John's, Newfoundland, who asked to mail him when someone found his message."
Bjarnason was walking along the shore between Thorlákshöfn and Strandakirkja on April 19, 2012 when she made her find.
She doesn't know why she was drawn to look at the bottle more closely.
"It was a common plastic bottle (filled with sand), about 20 metres from the sea with no label on it, and it had clearly been laying there for some time," Bjarnason wrote.
"The landscape there is pretty desolate, nobody lives there, there is only black lava and a little bit of sand."
Bjarnason's youngest son Sven was with her when she found the bottle, along with her husband. Sven is 22 years old, the same age Colin would now be.
"It was a little bit exciting to find a message from Newfoundland here in Iceland. Shortly after we found it I wrote a postcard to the address that was written on the paper, but so far we haven't got a reply," Bjarnason wrote.
The family lives in Hafnarfjördur, a suburb of the Icelandic capital Reykjavík. St. John's is 2,621 kilometres from Reykjavík, according to timeanddate.com. Colin's flimsy plastic bottle had to make a hefty trip to land in the area of the Bjarnasons' home.
Bjarnason figures the bottle may have followed the same course as Leif Ericson, who is believed to be the first European to land in North America.
"According to the Sagas of Icelanders, (Ericson) established a Norse settlement at Vinland, tentatively identified with the Norse L'Anse aux Meadows on the northern tip of Newfoundland," Bjarnason wrote.
Bjarnason hopes to make contact with Colin eventually, and let him know that his message didn't end up lost at sea.
If you know Colin Greene or can help us contact him, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 364-2323 Ext. 311.