NBC NATIONAL NEWS — The last time Scott Douglas saw his boat Queen Bee was during a fishing trip in Nantucket in August 2008.
Douglas and his brother-in-law Rich were thrown from the boat.
"The water was cresting," said Douglas, who now lives in Ho-Ho-Kus, New Jersey. "It was breaking over the top of the boat. Your last thought before going in the water was, 'There's no possible way we're going to survive this.'"
They swam for about an hour to the shore. Douglas didn't think his brother-in-law, who was recovering from recent heart surgery, would make it.
"I burst into tears," he said. "'I don't know if he's going to live.'"
But they both survived. It was a happy ending, though it didn't include the survival of the Queen Bee -- or so they thought.
Fast forward three and half years to this week in 2012.
Queen Bee is ostensibly back from the dead, washed ashore in Spain -- looking worse for the wear, perhaps, but remarkably still intact.
"She wanted to learn Spanish," Douglas joked. "She wanted a Spanish lover, somebody with lots of hair, and dark. She didn't want some old bald guy from Jersey."
The U.S. Coast Guard believes the Queen took her time during her journey overseas, going north towards Canada, then getting swept up in the Gulf Stream, crossing the Atlantic and sailing down to Spain.
Legally, the Queen Bee belongs to the Spanish government now, so Spain is where she'll remain.