Between 2010 and 2013 I spent a portion of the summer along the coasts of Denmark; first in Northern Jutland, then in Northern Sealand. Every day I would bring children and grown-ups alike out into the water to look for marine life. We’d search for anything from sea weed to fish, including crabs and prawns. Back on land, I would go over everything we had found. Telling stories to the children about life in the sea, and educating parents about the necessity for sustainable fisheries, decreased pollution and how they might contribute. The children and I would then go on to cooking crab soup, eating snails, mussels and seaweed.
This was one of my first experiences with public engagement and I took to it like a fish to water. There is something truely satisfactory in sharing your passions with children and grown-ups and seeing interest and amazement in their eyes. I had a child, who’s mother told me she was enormously picky about food. It took me five minutes before the girl was asking me to feed her snails. Her mother ended up taking a bag home for dinner.