I grew up by the ocean, spending my earliest years on the beaches of South Texas before moving with my family to the tiny island of Okinawa where I spent my grade school years.
I remember late nights at shacks in Texas, seasoned and boiled crabs dumped from enormous buckets onto newspaper-lined tables. It's there that, before kindergarten, I learned to smash my way through bright red, wild-armed creatures and pluck out every bit of their juicy, sweet flesh.
Later, in Japan, I remember pacing through the markets with my mother and younger sister. Alongside pots of fermented vegetables, strange herbs, and bags of rice, I remember the freshly caught fish: their eyes still glassy from the sea.