American receives response from France to 9-year-old letter in bottle

A 19-year-old Massachusetts man received a response to a message in a bottle he tossed into the Atlantic Ocean a decade ago – from a letter-writer who lives all the way in France.

Max Vrendenburgh, of Rockport, told CBS Boston that he remembers the exact moment he threw a wine bottle with a handwritten note inside into the water at Long Beach in his hometown nine years ago.

“I’m 10 years old,” the letter, dated August 21, 2010, said in part. “I like apples, I like the beach. My favorite color is blue. I like animals. I like cars and I like outer space. Please write back.”

Just last month, his parents received an expected letter in the mail. A man who identified himself as G. Dubois discovered the note on a beach in southwest France, between Contis and Mimizan — more than 3,700 miles away.

“You had grown a lot during that time,” Dubois wrote. “10 to 19 years old.”

Dubois also included a map pinpointing where he found the well-preserved message.

Vrendenburgh told the local station that his “stomach just dropped” when he read the response.

“I was like, ‘Oh my God. My 10-year-old wish just came true. This is insane,’” he said. “Logistically, I think I have a higher chance of winning the lottery than this happening.”

Vrendenburgh posted both letters to Twitter Friday, and since then, it has gone viral — racking up more than 520,000 likes and 136,000 retweets.

“This kind of made me reflect back on who I used to be,” he told the station.

Vrendenburgh and Dubois have also connected on Instagram, he told the station.

“I want to know about him,” Vrendenburgh said. “I want to know [what] he likes, what his favorite food is, what his favorite color is. Does he like space?”

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