West Coast / Irish Sea Dispatches Part 3 – North Wales, Llandudno and Rhos-On-Sea

Llandudno Pier

After having dispatched bottles in Chester on Thursday and Liverpool on Friday, it was time for North Wales on Saturday. At the Breakfast table we had still not quite decided where to go. But it was clear that we’d take the A55, and we’d decide on the spot whether to stop in Colwyn Bay or drive on to Llandudno. And since both kids were still patient when we came close to the first, we made it to the latter.

As you can see in the photo above, the beach close to the pier is of sand. Much of the beaches in North Wales are pebbles, and I suppose that there is some sand there, is what makes Llandudno attrative as a seaside resort. This is what a town looks like, when the Victorians think it makes a good Holiday destination:

Llandudno beach as seen from pier

As you can see now, only part of it is sand, the other half is the more characteristic pebbles. I found the non-existing transition between the two startling, and wonder how natural this beach is. However, the co-existence of both is natural in the area between Colwyn Bay and Llandudno.

As you can also guess from the photo, the weather wasn’t brilliant. We spent a bit of time at the beach and in the sand, went for lunch in one of the thousands of pizza-places and then went back to the pier to drop in the bottles. At that time, the skies looked rather threatening:

rain moving in

Well, and so we made this quick. I had been thinking of booking us on a boat ride around the bay, and drop the bottles from there. But the kids were cold, and none of them wanted to go onto the noisy (if you ask me rather exciting) motor boat ride.
High tide was on that day at 13:13, and it was now 13:50 – perfect timing. I simply went to the head of the pier that to drop them off. Below you see a picture of that pier pulled off Wikipedia:

By Gary Beale – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=62435137

On the very front was a small plattform reserved for fishing. After brief deliberation I decided against it, and threw in the bottles from the visitor’s part. These are the bottles I brought:

Llandudno bottles just before their dispatch

The two big ones made by peter, the two little ones made by me. They are a little hard to make out here. The smaller one of Peter’s bottles displayes a clearly readable “Do Not Read. Do Not Open” ­čÖé The big one with its characteristic red paint should be clearly visible. Mine are the No. 115 “Underground Pool”, and No. 109 “Lone House”.

M. snapped me while throwing in the first bottle

Without much ado, I simply threw them in as far as I managed to and simply one after the other. Then I watched them float out of the bay.

Bottles starting to float away (just below the middle)

I hope you can make them out, floating there. The big red-striped bottle was the first I threw in. As you can see I got a bit more practise as I went. But then, the big one went into the lead:

The big red one catching up and overtaking my two small ones

On our way back to Ellesmere then, we decided to pull out in Collwyn Bay – which looked like nothing, just a long sand beach with no pier, and I didn’t want to drop in a bottle there, it seemed pointless. But we followed the promenade to Rhos-on-Sea, and while there was not really good opportunity there either, I figured I take my chances and left one other bottle:

Bottle dispatched in Rhos-on-Sea

As you can maybe see in the photo the was in a small little harbour. In the next photo maybe you can see it swimming near the stones:

Rhos-bottle floating

As always, I wish all those bottles save travels and pleased and excited finders. – As I am so slow with updating this blog, already two of those 13 west-coast bottles have already been found. More in the next post.

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West Coast/Irish Sea Dispatches Part I – Chester

Old Dee Bridge, Chester

Last weekend I made a trip to the West Coast of Great Britain to dispatch the first batch of bottles into the Irish Sea. As you may know, I made a good bunch of bottles over the last weeks and months, and it was time to get them wet. I also met with people in Nottingham to make bottles, and two German writers of messages in bottles sent me messages of their own. – So a very good reason to take the family on a short trip.

On August 1st we stopped in Chester on the way. Chester is one of the really old cities in England, going back to the Roman fort “castrum deva victrix” 79 AD. It is built on the banks of the river Dee. Around Chester it takes some tight turns, and then runs pretty much straight into its estuary. The river is subject to the tides there, and I made sure to drop my bottles in at fairly high tide, but after the highest rise.

Chester Bottles

The next decision to take was, which bottles to throw in. The photo above shows my choice:

The first bottle to hit the waters was one of mine: A Gaivani bottle with a letter written during the workshop, and one of my very short stories inside.

First bottle about to be thrown in.

The twins were more than happy to help with the dispatch.

The second bottle to go in, was also one of mine, the oldest of all of them, one of the first with paper mache houses:

one last look on the second chester bottle

Then it was my daughter’s turn. Next she dropped in one of the bottles made on the workshop by one of the participants. She was so excited, it was hard to get a last photo before it dropped in:

And last but not least, she put in another bottle for me, one that also has one of my stories (a different one) inside:

We saw all of them float downstream, and of course we wish all four of them a safe travel and happy finders!

In total I put 13 bottles into or close to the Irish Sea, these were just the first four. I’ll show you more in the next blogpost.

 

Abwurf und Fund in der Ostsee / Dispatch and Landing in the Baltic Sea

Wolf Schindler an Bord der Rollo (1)

I am going to tell you today about the dispatch of three bottles and the immediate finding of one of them. Because all the protagonists are German, I am going to write in German with English translations in between.

Wie der Titel schon sagt, will ich heute von einem Abwurf (und auch gleich einem Fund) in der Ostsee erz├Ąhlen. – Mal wieder auf deutsch, weil alle Protagonisten Deutsche sind. Aber nun der Reihe nach:

Am 16.6. habe ich hier 10 meiner neuen Fl├Ąschchen vorgestellt (in der Zwischenzeit sind noch welche dazu gekommen, aber davon ein andermal). Nur einen Tag sp├Ąter, schrieb mir mein Online-Freund und Flaschenpostkumpane Peter Stein aka James Ismael Kuck, ob ich ihm nicht eine oder mehrere der Fl├Ąschchen f├╝r einen Abwurf in der Ostsee schicken wolle.

On June 16th I wrote a blogpost here, showing off my newest bottles. Just a day later, a fellow German writer of messages in bottles, Peter Stein, contacted me and asked, whether I might be interested in three of the bottles being dispatched in the Baltic sea.

It just so happened that he was about to meet another creator of messages in bottles, the German artist Wolf Schindler, who was going to go on a sailing boat trip, and he was going to carry and dispatch several bottles – and maybe he could also drop in mine. — Of course I was only too happy to send over three of them:

my bottles Numbered 106, 110, 111 on board the Rollo (1)

Und zwar hatte er vor, sich mit Wolf Schindler zu treffen, einem K├╝nstler (Malerei, ├╝berwiegend Acryl auf Leinwand, wenn ich das richtig sehe) aus Weilheim in Oberbayern, weit weg vom Meer. Aber trotzdem ist er ist auch Segler und Flaschenpostler: im Jahr 2000 startete er ein Flaschenpostprojekt, f├╝r das ├╝ber 5 Jahre insgesamt 50 Flaschen abgeworfen wurden. Aber wie so viele, die einmal damit beginnen, scheinen ihn die Flaschenposten nicht mehr loszulassen. Auf seinen T├Ârn Anfang Juli in der Ostsee (Start Kiel), hatte er nat├╝rlich auch Flaschenposten dabei. Na, und wenn man sich schon trifft, unter Flaschenpostlern, dann tauscht man auch gerne mal ein oder zwei Flaschen aus, und so hatte Peter f├╝r sein Treffen mit Wolf seinerseits was vorbereitet. So nun also die Frage an mich, ob ich nicht Peter was schicken wolle, das er dann mit zu Wolf bringen w├╝rde, und er w├╝rde sie dann, mit der Crew der Rollo (der Name des Schiffes, interessante Geschichte, die ihr hier nachlesen k├Ânnt) dann abwerfen.

all bottles together: the there small ones are mine, the two medium bottles were filled by Peter, and the three tall ones with red marking are Wolf’s (1)

Da konnte ich nat├╝rlich nicht “Nein” sagen, und habe gleich drei meiner Fl├Ąschchen auf den Weg gebracht. Am 26. Juni erhielt ich Nachricht von Peter, dass sie ihren Postweg heile ├╝berstanden haben.

On June 26th Peter contacted me to let me know that he received the bottles well. On the first of July they were handed over to the crew of the Rollo in Kiel:

Crew der Rollo (2)

Am 1. Juli dann wurden sie in Kiel der Crew der Rollo ├╝bergeben.

Am 5. Juli erhielt ich dann eine Nachricht per Email:

Hallo Hilke!

I found your bottle today at the ÔÇ×OstseeÔÇť in Gro├čenbrode nearby Island
Fehmarn!
The bottle was lying on the Beach!
In the Night was strong North West Wind!

VG, der Finder

Seit dem habe ich nach und nach die Reise der Flasche zusammengebastelt. Weiterer Email-austausch mit dem Finder ergab, dass es sich um Flasche Nr. 111 handelte, die mit dem einzelnen Haus.

Am 12. 7., nachdem Wolf wieder zu Hause war, habe ich von ihm einen “Logbuch-Ausschnitt” zugeschickt bekommen, aus dem hervorgeht, dass die Flasche am 1.7. abgeworfen wurde. Seine Notizen sind ziemlich genau:

auf der Fahrt von KIEL-HOLTENAU nach ECKERNF├ľRDE, Einf. Eckernf.- 
Bucht; 18.30 Uhr, Pos. 54┬░29┬┤N 10┬░01┬┤E, Wind 5 aus West, B├Âen 6-7, 
Wolken, Schauer

Das heisst, die Flasche war etwa 4 Tage unterwegs, und hat in der Zeit gesch├Ątzt knapp 70km zur├╝ckgelegt. Ich hab’ mir (von Peter) sagen lassen, dass das f├╝r die Ostsee ein ordentliches Tempo ist – aber anscheinend war ja auch ein ganz sch├Ânes Wetterchen!

contents of bottle No. 111 – obviously before sealing the bottle

On 5th of July, before I heard from Wolf when and where my bottles were dispatched, I received message of a finder, who had picked up my bottle No. 111 (the contents shown above) at a beach near Gro├čenbrode in Germany, on the continental land near the island Fehmarn.

On the 12th of July Wolf Schindler sent me the log entries that contain the dispatches of my bottles, and from that it follows that it travelled a little short of 70km in 4 days, which isn’t bad for the Baltic sea.

I wish all the other bottles kind finders and safe travels!

Nun hoffe ich auf weitere Fundmeldungen sowohl von meinen, als auch von ihren Schwesterflaschen!

Flasche Nr. 106 (3 H├Ąuser) am 2.7. auf der Fahrt von Eckernf├Ârde nach Marstal, N├Ąhe Damp abgeworfen.

Flasche Nr. 110 (Picknick) wurde am 5.7. auf der Fahrt von Faborg nach Sonderborg abgeworfen.Gute Fahrt, alles Flaschenposten!

the message, tied to the base onto which the little house is then mounted

Ein herzliches Dankesch├Ân an Peter S. und Wolf Schindler, f├╝r die Erlaubnis, eure Bilder zu benutzen. (1 Bildrechte Peter S., 2 Bildrechte Wolf Schindler)

Many thanks to Peter S. and Wolf Schindler for allowing me to use their photos. (1 copyright Peter S., 2 copyright Wolf Schindler)

Dispatch of Bottle No. 104 in a Happy Splash

Looking downstream onto the Trent Bridge from the footbridge that we used to drop our bottles into the river Trent

Jet Propelled, a friend and fellow artist from Beeston, near Nottingham recently brought me into (online) contact with another woman, a German who lives in West Bridgeford and misses the German language. We ended up discussing about meeting up, and she invited me and Jet for cake and tea. Since it turned out she lives in walking distance to the Trent a plan to dispatch some bottles formed…

We were lucky with the weather: After days of snowy April weather, the skies were clear on Friday 5th here in Nottingham. The wind blew in breezy bursts and made it feel rather chilly, but the sun came out and played beautifully with the gentle waves, turning the river into a street of silver and gold. At least from where we sat and assembled some bottles.

Bottles gathering on our bench

I always enjoy to have company when dropping off bottles!I brought two filled and sealed bottles with me: My bottle No. 104 with a little folded paper boat in it, and Peter’s bottle No. – ack! I don’t remember its number; the number is bound to be close to mine. He sent it to me when I was setting off to drop some bottles into the river Don in Sheffield, where both our bottles numbered 100 hit the waters (read more about that dop off here).

Bottle No. 104 “Paper Boat”

Ursula hadn’t prepared anything, but was eager to also have a go. Jet brought her own bottle but had not sealed hers yet. And while they were making their bottles ready, I also made another one on the spot.
And so we sat and wrote and assembled…

Jet assembling her bottle

My trusty Zippo had just run out of fuel, and thus sealing the bottles with sealing wax turned out frustratingly difficult.  We sat at the bridge head, crouching and shielding the flame in a joint effort. I managed to melt and scrape some sealing wax onto my bottle, but then we decided to give up. I am fairly sure that they are all closed well, the wax had been more decorative than anything, I suppose.

trying to melt sealing wax klein

Then we decided to drop the bottles off a suspension bridge a little upstream from Trent Bridge after all. This one is only open to pedestrians while Trent Bridge has heavy traffic.

Bottles getting ready

And so, after about an hour of walking and assembling, one bottle after the other went over the fairly high railing on the bridge. I made a start with my little paper boat bottle:

Yours truely throwing in the first bottle

Next it was Jet’s turn. she had filled her bottle with a piece of driftwood, decorated with pink ribbons, brass wire, some other little tokens including found text, and of course with a letter inside:

Jet throwing in her bottle, titled “53” after the number appeared on the found text she collaged onto the wood

Next, I put in Peter’s bottle. Isn’t the bottle itself so very beautiful as the sun came out to bid it farewell. I hope whoever finds it will enjoy it as much as I enjoyed having it in my studio for a couple of months:

Peter’s bottle getting ready

Unfortuntately my new German friend was so quick to drop in hers that I didn’t manage to capture her with the camera.

And then I was up again: My riverside bottle contained a good handful of lucky stars, a little touchstone, and one of the most personal letters I have written so far. I didn’t give this one a number, as it wasn’t meant to be part of the series, or at least not necessarily.

getting ready, and….

gone

As always, I keep  my fingers crossed for a good voyage and gentle finders.

Two Dispatches in Frankfurt/Main

two hospital rooms in the making for my current book art work “346”

It has been a bit quiet here in the past weeks, and admittedly, it has been a little quiet in my studio regarding messages in bottles. As always there are several reasons for this: My children were not in school for 5 weeks during the summer. In that time I had very little time that I could spent in my studio and thus I didn’t have much time making new bottles. At the same time, because we just bought a house among other reasons we didn’t go on a holiday where I could have dispatched bottles, and thus I still have a couple here – which I would like to dispatch but maybe not in the river Trent as that hasn’t proofed a good idea so far.
And then: My bottles quite often were related to my other art work. Currently I am working on finishing a really big project. The title is “346”, and I have been working on it for about two and a half years and am finally in the finishing stage. Much of my efforts currently go in there, therefore.
In the picture above you see the start of the box that will go with two very special copies of the book. I am making miniatures for this box pretty much as we speak. – And you now can finally see how I came to make miniatures for bottles before: I was practicing and seeing what I could do. Or maybe it was the other way around, and I decided to really make such a book after I started making miniatures for bottles? Both of it is true, I guess.

flaschenpost no 077

Bottle No. 77

While I have not made more bottles, or dispatched any, others worked for me, and the bottle above and the bottle below were put into the river Main at Frankfurt last Monday. More about this in a short while. This is just some kind of heads-up, I guess. And I wanted to put something here in case someone already found one of them! As always I am wishing for finders who like and appreciate the content. And I would be happy about some kind of contact and notification when they got found.

Message in a Bottle No. 84

bottle no. 84

Some of your might remember that I met with fellow message in a bottle writer Ina (bottled fortune) in Hamburg in May. Today I saw that there is a video online of someone who found one of her bottles. The video is in German. But I guess you can get the gist of it, even if you don’t understand what he is saying. Isn’t it great how speechless he gets when he sees her letter “uoa!”

Last Weekend’s Unusual Dispatch

manchester 3 kleiner

R├Ątselbild: Wo ist das?

Hallo, miteinander! Ich hatte in einem vorherigen Blogpost ja schonmal erz├Ąhlt, dass ich letztes Wochenende Geburtstag hatte. Und wie angek├╝ndigt, hat mich mein lieber Mann auf eine ├ťberraschungsreise eingeladen. Das Bild oben ist in der Garage bei unserem Hotel entstanden. Na, wagt einer einen Tipp wo wir waren? Ich finde ja, es sieht original wie in Hongkong aus (das haben wir vor acht Jahren unsere Hochzeitsreise hin gemacht). Aber wir waren in Manchester. – Das ist auch viel praktischer von Nottingham aus zu erreichen.

Hello everyone! I told you in my last blog post that it – will be, by now was – my birthday last weekend. And as expected, M. took me on a trip. The photo above was made on the parking deck near our hotel. Can you guess where we went? To me it looks so much like Hong Kong (where we spent our honeymoon eight years ago, by the way). But of course it was much nearer: we went to Manchester.

China Town in Manchester

China Town in Manchester

Ich hatte mir zum Geburtstag gew├╝nscht, mal wieder sch├Ân Dim Sum essen zu gehen. Hier in Nottingham gibt es zwar hier und da am Wochenende Dim Sum in Restaurants zu bestellen, aber so richtig sch├Ân ist es erst in richtigen kantonesischen Restaurants, wo die Kellner mit Wagen zwischen den Tischen hin- und herfahren, und man sich auf den Tisch nimmt, was einem gef├Ąllt und was eben so vorbeikommt. Und das gibt es hier leider nicht. – Und so ging die Reise nach Manchester, wo eine gr├Â├čere chinesische Gemeinschaft gibt, und auch die richtige Sorte Restaurant.

I had asked M. for my birthday, to invite me for a real dim sum once again. He got to know and love dim sum restaurants when he lived in Taiwan before we got to know each other. When he later lived in the Minneapolis, USA, he took me to a dim sum place there, in memory of his old times – and I loved it! Since then we went many times whenever was possible, and it it by now mostly me draging him there. Although it is possible in many Chinese restaurants to order dim sum from a menu on Sundays (which we often did), neither Bonn nor Nottingham has one of the cantonese restaurants where they drive the food around on carts and you choose what you want to eat while it is passing by. – And I missed this! Therefore my birthday wish. And so M. took me to China Town in Manchester.

manchester 4 kleiner

Kunst in Manchester

We only had little time with two small children on one day in Manchester, and the weather was not really fine, and so we have much more to see and come again. – And I do hope and expect we’ll be back anothe rtime. Manchester seems an exciting city. For example we spotted this metal dragon waiting for something on what seemed like a ruin.

Manchester war ├╝berhaupt sch├Ân und beeindruckend. Zum Beispiel haben wir im Vor├╝bergehen diesen Metalldrachen lauern sehen. Kinder sind ja von anderen Dingen begeistert als Erwachsene. Unser Sohn fand vor allem die ganzen geschlossenen Ladenfronten in China-Town aufregend, an denen wir vorbei gekommen sind als wir am Samstag Morgen schonmal eine Runde gedreht haben. An jedem Metallrolladen musste er Halt machen, mit den Fingern dagegen klopfen, und feststellen, wie “lustig” das ist. Was daran so am├╝sant war, haben wir nicht verstanden.

Manchester geschm├╝ckt

Manchester geschm├╝ckt

Whole Manchester (not just China Town) was decorated because this week in the whole city various things happen in celebration of chinese New Year on Monday. – Very nice!

Weil kommenden Montag chinesisches Neujahrsfest ist, und deshalb an diesem Wochenende in Manchester ├╝berall Festlichkeiten stattfinden, war auch letztes Wochenende schon die ganze Stadt (nicht nur China-Town) mit diesen roten chinesischen Laternen geschm├╝ckt. – Sehr h├╝bsch!

Dim Sum - Naja, nur leere Bambusk├Ârbe

Dim Sum – Naja, fast nur leere Bambusk├Ârbe

And of course we finally also had dim sum. Unfortunately it was also the weekend of bad photography for me, it seems, and so I don’t have much to show you, I am afraid.

Mein Dim Sum habe ich nat├╝rlich auch bekommen. Leider war schlechte-Fotos-Wochenende, so wie’s scheint, und ich habe nicht viel zum Vorzeigen. Aber wir hatten viel Spa├č und haben alle so viel gegessen, dass wir fast nicht mehr vom Tisch aufstehen konnten.

Dann war eigentlich Zeit zum Flaschen einwerfen. Ich hatte ja vor, zur Feier des Tages vier Flaschen einzuwerfen. – Und da viel mir auf, dass ich sie in der Hektik des Losfahrens am Freitag Abend vergessen hatte. Oh nein!

And after eating, we were going to go to the city center and dispatch the four bottles that I took with me – oh no! At that moment I realized that I had left them at home. We drove off on Friday evening in a hurry, and I simply forgot to put them in my bag.
There was nothing I could do about that now, of course. But I didn’t want to leave the city without leaving a bottle. And so I bought some lemonade in a glass bottle with a tin screw-on top and prepared the bottle in our hotel room:

Flaschenpost

ein unschmeichelhaftes Bild von mir mit Flaschenpost

Weil ich so ganz ohne Flaschenpost abschicken dann aber doch nicht wieder nach Hause wollte, habe ich also in einem Supermarkt eine Limonade in Glasflasche mit Schraubverschluss gekauft, ausgetrunken, Etikett abgel├Âst und nach einen Brief geschrieben. Mein Sohn hat auch was gekritzelt, denn er wollte unbedingt mitmachen. Und dann habe ich noch zwei Bilder aus meinem Skizzenbuch, das ich dabei hatte mit reingelegt, und zugeschraubt.

I put in a letter (of course), and added two pictures from my sketchbook that I carried with me. My son added a letter of his own, because he wanted to be part of this, too.
The next day, we went to the River Irwell, which conveniently flows through the centre of the city, and dispatched the bottle from bridge road. Unfortuantely all photos of the event are blurry so that I have nothing more to show you. But then, you probably know by now how it looks like when I put a bottle in to a river.

Flaschenpost

Flaschenpost

Am n├Ąchsten Tag habe ich sie dann direkt vor der Abfahrt in den River Irwell geworfen, stilecht von der “Bridge Street” aus. – Leider sind die Fotos auch alle verwackelt und unscharf. Aber naja, ihr wisst ja mittlerweile, wie es aussieht, wenn ich eine Flasche in einen Fluss werfe.

Nun ist eine Woche ins Land gegangen, und ich habe noch nichts geh├Ârt. Da die Flasche nur ihren Metallverschluss hatte, bin ich pessimistisch. Aber man kann ja nie wissen. Also dann “Weiter Gute Reise!” wieder ungew├Âhnlichen Flasche, die deshalb auch keine Nummer in meinem Projekt bekommen hat.

Because this bottle is so different, I didn’t give it a number in this project. It has been a week now, and I have not heard anything. I must admit I am a little bit pessimistic about this bottle. But you never know, and so I wish it another “Farewell and happy finders!”

Last Week’s Result: 6 Dispatched, 1 Found

wells flaschenpost

bottle floating in the sea near Wells-next-the-Sea

We had a big celebration here on Saturday in our house will all our family from Germany visiting, but had arranged everything to go on a brief vacation with my sister and her family for a couple of days, leaving on Sunday. As you might expect, the Saturday and Sunday morning were full of activity and running around. I sat down in the car beside DH, kids in the back, excited to go on a beach vacation with their cousins, heaved a big sigh of relief, and felt ready for vacation indeed. Luckily the drive was not far, a little less than three hours to Wells-Next-The-Sea in North Norfolk.

The beach in Wells is magnificent. There are dunes along the shore, some permanently outside the water, some forming islands while the water is retreating. During low tide, we did not manage to actually walk to the shore line, because our kids would have had to be carried the whole way. Here is a satellite image of the coast (thanks to google):

sat img wells

satellite image of the coast near Wells-next-the-Sea (via google maps)

Can you see that brighter yellow strip near the pine forrest there, this is the part of the beach that usually stays dry during high tide. The whole rest is covered in water. The water then retreats fast, but there is a stream that remains full of water also during low tide. I am not sure whether this is a river in the sense that it carries sweet water. But there are several springs in and around wells (hence the name) and it might be that it is a “real” river. However, looking at google maps it seems to be connected to the sea at several points, and the tide definitely pushes in mightilty. So I am not sure.

On Monday I unfortunately couldn’t leave the bed (full story on my other blog), but M. and my sister put in a bottle for me. The tide was already fairly low, and with more small children at the beach than adults, it was not possible for them to reach the actual sea. So they tossed two bottles in this stream:

Here goes the bottle with number 69

Here goes the bottle with number 69

and number 71 right after.

and number 71 right after.

It is funny how fast bottles goe seperate ways after having been tossed in at essentially the same time and the same spot. Bottle number 69 was found right after being put into the water. I have not heard anything about the other one.

Two days later. I went to the beach myself. This time the water just started to retreat – ideal conditions.

wells no 62

I make one photo of the number before putting in bottles to know later which bottle relates to which image.

My sister and I took turns throwing in bottles which were caught by the falling tide and the current that would later be the river and drifted quickly out to sea. You can see the buoys in the photos, marking the waterway to Wells harbour for ships.

Bottle number 66

Bottle number 66

throwing in bottle number 70

throwing in bottle number 70

Bottle number 68

Bottle number 68

Although the bottles drifted away quickly, we could follow them with our eyes for a while, drifting past two smaller boats. The beach was well visited and I feared someone might take the bottles out right after me tossing it in. But at least those four could only have been retrieved from the beach at hight risk, given the speed with which they drifted out to sea. We looked for a less visited corner, and indeed it looked like no-one watched us throwing. And also the people on the boat didn’t seem to notice the floating bottles.

On our way home on Thursday, we took a break to look at King’s Lynn, where the river Ouse flows into the sea. Unfortunately I didn’t have any more bottles on me. M. was surprised that I put in 4 bottles on Wednesday, but my sister and I had just too much fun tossing the bottles to not to. I wish I had brough more.

When I came home, I found a surprise in my mailbox. A boy aged 11 send me the following message:

I found your little message in the bottle at Wells-next-to-seaÔÇÖs beach on Monday the 17th of August 2015. I was really surprised to find it floating around in the sea. I was just wondering where did you drop the message in from? my number for the bottle is 69.

Of course I already wrote back, gave him some details and asked for more. How did he find it? Was it hard to spot? Easy to open? Everything dry? And who is he? Was he on a vacation? Where is he from? – I hope he’ll answer my email. If he does, I’ll let you know of course.

This is a picture of the bottle still at home:

Message in a Bottle No. 69

Message in a Bottle No. 69, still at home

I named bottle number 69 “jumpping fish”, and as usual for these bottles, I cut the stamp for the fish by hand, and put the stamp in as a gift.

the cover image and the stamp on my worktable

the cover image and the stamp on my worktable

When I point my computer’s camera down, you can see that I curently have six more bottles here waiting for their release. I would like to put at least some of the small worlds into the river Thames. That is because I hope that even wild as it is, the river would be more gentle to the bottles than the open sea, and I know that there is at least one message collector on the Thames shores. Well, I’ll see. And of course I’ll let you know as soon as I can. (Unfortunately that sometimes means after I already put the bottles in. If you are interested in meeting up, taking a look at the bottles before I toss them, or just to join up for a joint tossing event, let me know now so that I we can be in touch closer to the actual event.)

at homeP.S.: I just noticed that for all summer dispatches, on all the photos I was wearing the same pair of pants. I maybe should mention that I do have others, and I also wear them…