New York state girl's message in a bottle reaches Morocco

By Ben Hooper Contact the Author   |  June 4, 2018 at 12:51 PM
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June 4 (UPI) -- A New York state girl who threw a message in a bottle overboard from a cruise to Bermuda has received word that it was found three years later in Morocco.

Imtaiz Khokhar of West Islip, on Long Island, said he helped his then-6-year-old daughter, Shiloe, author a message in a bottle and they threw it overboard from the back of a Norwegian Cruise Line ship they boarded in Boston for a trip to Bermuda about three years ago.

Khokhar said he received an email recently from Ayoub Elbaz, a Moroccan man whose father, Hassan, found the bottle on Guelmim's famous Plage Blanche, or "white beach."

Elbaz said his father can't read or speak English, so he enlisted the help of his son, who is studying French and knew enough English to discern the contents of the message, which included an email address to tell the family about the bottle's discovery.

"I waited and waited and then I gave up," Shiloe, now 9, told Newsday. "I think it's really cool because it actually took almost three years."

She said she had not expected the bottle to travel to northern Africa.

"I thought it would go to England because of the current of the ocean," she said.

Imtaiz Khokhar admitted he hadn't been nearly as optimistic when they made the bottled message.

"I didn't think it was really going to go anywhere," Khokhar said. "I was just trying to make her happy."

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