Hanging Out With Bargibanti is a whimsical yarn about a minute sea citizen, a pygmy seahorse about the size of a grain of rice called Hippocampus bargibanti. I first met Bargibanti at 18 metres on a remote reef drop-off in Raja Ampat (Indonesia). Around Bargibanti was a diverse array of marine creatures going about their daily business. One year later I went back to visit and there was Bargibanti still attached to the same sea fan.
It gave me an idea about a children’s book to celebrate the rich diversity of the region’s marine life. I should apologise for my anthropomorphising but I needed an excuse to hopefully engage young imaginations. Apologies also to Lewis Carroll.
Whilst all the individuals depicted play themselves, I have stretched Bargi’s friendships about 1,000 kilometres across the coral triangle region. Many characters however lived with 20 metres of Bargi’s sea fan.