68-year-old man, named Wim Kruiswijk is collecting messages-in-bottles. He has respond to 1200 messages over the 34 years. This Dutch beachcomber has an unusual hobby and he began with it in 1983, after he found three messages-in-bottles on his local beach. In every letter was mentioned the address and Kruiswijk happily wrote to all and receive responses from each one.
Since he saw that his effort was appreciated, he never stopped looking for messages-in-bottles. “I find my messages in bottles on the beach of Zandvoort, where I live, and on the Dutch Islands,” Kruiswijk said. “Messages in bottles is slow mail. It takes you days, or weeks, or months to find a bottle.”
At first, he found up to 50 bottles a year, but with 2000 his score started to decrease at 20-30 finds. This decreasing is due to the beach cleaning. Also, he thinks that the internet plays an important part for the diminishing number of finds. “I used to get a response at half the bottle messages that I answered. Now that’s less; many people want ‘instant satisfaction,”’ Kruiswijk said. All of his finds are put in plastic folders and sealed.
The Greek philosopher Theophrastus used bottles to study the currents, circa 310 B.C. This method is still used to help researchers develop ocean maps and to obtain studies of ocean currents. In the past messages-in-bottles were also used for memorial tributes as a sign of love for those who were in their final journey.