Luke Kenny was working with an environmental group on several islands in the south Atlantic when, on a trip from South Georgia, a British territory, to the Falkland Islands, he dropped five messages into bottles and cast them into the ocean, never really expecting they would resurface.
"The bottles were deployed not as a Robinson Crusoe cry for rescue, but as much for curiosity as for anything else," Kenny said. "To see where it might turn up should it withstand the stormy southern [Atlantic] Ocean -- quite honestly I didn't even begin to speculate where that might be."
As it turned out, the bottle washed up on Stewart Island off the south end of New Zealand when Simon Taylor was beach-combing with family, MercoPress reported Saturday.
Taylor said he spotted the bottle and at first didn't think much of it, but then saw what he thought was a message inside and got excited.
"I saw a bottle in the distance but didn't think much of it as there's quite a bit of [junk] on the beach," he said. "It was only when I saw the screw cap was intact and there was something inside that I went for a closer look."
Inside was a note from Kenny describing his time working on the islands and his desire not to return to "the 'real' world, with lots of people, noise, pollution and the ever advancing tide of commercialization."
Taylor sent a letter to the Irish address Kenny left in the message alerting him to the finding.