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Mardi Gras Message in a Bottle Found

A couple years ago, I saw this story floating around the web for a bit, and I was intrigued. But I never heard any resolution–so here we are. The basic story is that an imgur user named “moskeytoes” found a message in a bottle in 2016 that had been sent by three people: Amanda Ferguson, someone named “Jinks” and someone named “Fern,” I think… They sent it in celebration of Mardi Gras in 2004. On moskeytoes’ imgur feed, there are a bazillion trolly messages that mean nothing to me, from people claiming to be Amanda, or to have known Amanda, yadda yadda. It is impossible to tell whether moskeytoes ever really found Amanda (and hey, moskeytoes, if you see this–hit me up! I’d love to help you solve this thang!). But this Mardi Gras message in a bottle is so intriguing to me–I just had to go digging for the back story…

I mean, check out the beads in the bottle!

Imgur user "Moskeytoes" with the Mardi Gras message in a bottle he found in the Florida Keys, complete with "authentic Mardi Gras beads".

Imgur user “Moskeytoes” with the Mardi Gras message in a bottle he found in the Florida Keys, complete with “authentic Mardi Gras beads”. Photo: Moskeytoes.

Mardi Gras message in a bottle from 2004. Hard to read...

Mardi Gras message in a bottle from 2004. Hard to read… Photo: Moskeytoes.

Mardi Gras Message in a Bottle: Full Text

You can see how moskeytoes translated the message by clicking here to check out his post on imgur. But I have been able to figure out more words through photo manipulation and a bit of research. For example, the opening about a “tremendous experiment” is a quote from Carl Jung in his “Commentary on ‘The Secret of the Golden Flower'”. It seems we are dealing with a philosophical group of people!

Amanda Ferguson

Message in a Bottle

May 17th, 2004

Set off from Ormond…

“It is the tremendous experiment of becoming conscious, which nature has laid upon mankind, and which unites the most diverse cultures in a common task.” –  Carl Jung

I don’t know what I hope to… in sending this message…

bottle, yet I hope it works for…

You–the lucky finder of the bottle…

me–the soon luckier sender of this bottle. I’ve enclosed authentic Mardi Gras beads from Feb 13th, 2004 New Orleans – LA! “where, Y’at?” The good luck Voodoo will bless us. Believe. Please contact me when you find this.

Amanda Ferguson (386) 235 – 6373

Jinks…

(478) 922

Fern…

(713)…

Mardi Gras Message in a Bottle Sent from Ormond… Ormond Beach? Ormond Place?

Moskeytoes is under the impression that this message in a bottle was sent from Ormond Beach, Florida, which is very possible since one of the phone numbers has an area code associated with Ormond Beach. But, everything that comes after “Ormond” in the message is impossible to read. The word after “Ormond” looks to me like it could begin with a “P” rather than a “B”. Compare for yourself. What do you think? Here is how the author makes a capital “B” at the beginning of “Believe”:

And here’s how she makes a capital “P” at the beginning of “Please”:

But the word after “Ormond”? Here’s the letter it begins with:

I ask you: is that a “B”? Or a “P”? I really don’t know–but it’s not a trivial question. You see, there IS an Ormond Beach in Florida. But there is a also an Ormond Place in New Orelans, on water that might lead out to the Mississippi / Gulf of Mexico and potentially on to the Florida Keys (hard to say for sure from Google maps…)

I have personally found a message in a bottle in the Caribbean that was dropped into the Delaware River many, many miles inland from the sea. So it is entirely possible that this bottle started out in a little canal near Ormond Place in New Orleans. But I can also see how someone from Ormond Beach, FL might have sent it on the Atlantic Coast. Though there is one problem with that–the Atlantic Ocean, along Florida, flows north. Not south. But this message was found in the Florida Keys. So, normally, it would seem unlikely that it was sent from Ormond Beach, Fl. Of course, sometimes near-shore currents can work differently along parts of the east coast, as I explained in this post about a message in a bottle that should have traveled north but traveled south instead. So, I suppose it is possible that the bottle floated south from Ormond Beach to the Florida Keys. However, I think the bottle, which was out to sea for 12 must have gotten sucked into the Gulf Stream, then traveled north in the Atlantic, entering the main north Atlantic Gyre, where it probably circulated a few times over 12 years–then washed up in the keys. Of course, this is unknowable.

Another possibility is that the message was written and sealed up and intended to be sent from Ormond Beach, but was actually sent from somewhere else. I know that sounds strange–but plans change. Remember Lily from Fort Lauderdale’s message in a bottle? Her note said she sent it from Dania Pier–but in fact, it turned out to have been sent somewhere else entirely, as explained in the post about how I found her. So this Mardi Gras message in a bottle could have actually been dropped from, say, a boat that went out to sea.

Anyway–the phone number Amanda Ferguson lists for herself has a 386 area code, which does encompass Ormond Beach, Florida. So, whether the message was sent from Ormond Place in New Orleans or Ormond Beach, Florida, Amanda seems to have some connection to Ormond Beach / the Daytona area. Since the date it was sent (May 2004) is so much later than Mardi Gras (Feb. 2004), I wouldn’t be surprised if it was indeed sent from Ormond Beach, Florida.

All that just to say: If you know someone named Amanda Ferguson who lived in Ormond Beach in 2004, lemme know!

The Other Names in the Bottle

There are at least two other phone numbers on the message which seem to be associated with two other names–and they are very hard to read!

Name #2 looks like “Jinks”-something to me. Under this name is a phone number beginning “(478) 922” which associates this person, “Jinks,” with the area of Macon, Georgia. The 478 area code encompasses Macon and the surrounding area.

Name #3 is the hardest to read, and looks to me like “Fern”. The area code looks like (713) which is a Houston area code. This would make sense, as the other two people signing this note are also from the south.

Here’s a question: If this Mardi Gras message in a bottle was sent from Ormond Beach, Florida, by someone who lived in Ormond Beach (Amanda), then why does it contain the names of two other people who live hundreds of miles away, in Georgia and Texas? Had they been at Mardi Gras 2004 together? Were Jinks and Fern visiting Amanda in Ormond Beach when they sent the bottle?

Mardi Gras Message in a Bottle Mystery Continues

Interestingly, on Moskeytoes’ imgur page, the only people who claimed to know anything about the note also claimed to be / know only Amanda. No one mentioned the other names and phone numbers in the note, which strikes me as suspicious. If the real Amanda had found the imgur post, I would have expected her to acknowledge certain details about the message–like her friends’ names.

But then–I still have plenty to learn about these things.

What do you think? Has anyone found Amanda? Do YOU know her? What about Jinks from Macon? Fern from Houston? And what’s the deal on the Carl Jung quote? And what about the “good luck voodoo”? There are just so many unanswered questions about this Mardi Gras message in a bottle!

I would love to make contact with Amanda Ferguson who lived in Ormond Beach in 2004, or Jinks, who lived in Macon, Georgia, or Fern, who lived in Houston. If anyone out there can put me in touch–contact me by clicking here!

***If you liked this story, click here to find me on Facebook and like my page for more message in a bottle stories! You never know when YOU could be the one to solve a message in a bottle mysteryClick here to learn more about messages in bottles, and you can always contact me with questions, ideas, or stories.

 

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