A lost camera unites Taiwan and Japan

When Serina Tsubakihara dropped her camera into the sea on holiday more than two years ago, she thought that was the last she’d see of it..

But amazingly, she will now be reunited with the device after it washed ashore in full working order 155 miles away, the BBC reports.

The Japanese university student last saw her Canon G12 on the island of Ishigaki, Okinawa, in September 2015.

“I was scuba diving and I lost the camera when one of my friends ran out of air and needed my help,” she told the BBC.

But kept safe in its waterproof case, the camera went on a journey across the waves and ended up in Yilan, on the coast of Taiwan. Schoolchildren from Yue Ming Elementary School who were combing the beach found the device, which by then was covered with barnacles and lichen. When taken out, it still worked—and even had some battery life left.

The teacher, Park Lee, discussed with his students whether it would be possible to get the camera back to its owner.

“Some children thought we had earned the camera and could keep for ourselves. Others suggested we should try to find the owner—and so we all sat down to think about how to do that,” Lee said.

Seeing that some of the images were from Japan, they posted them to Facebook in both Mandarin and Japanese.

The post was shared more than 10,000 times, and within 12 hours the pupils had located Tsubakihara, a third year English student at the Department of Foreign Languages in Tokyo’s Sophia University.

She who now go to Taiwan to thank the pupils and pick up her camera.

“I am so lucky and happy to have this miracle opportunity to feel kindness of people in my life. Those pictures remind me of old memories and brought me back to those,” she said.

It is just the latest device to have survived a trip at sea. In November 2017, a camera left on a Yorkshire beach traveled across the North Sea and washed up 500 miles away on the tiny German island of Süderoog.