The Lesson

Deploying the anchors and buoys in rough weather

The first night on our site, one of the crew members was standing guard when he noticed the weather getting a bit rougher. This wasn’t good with the Son Worshipper hipped up to the Sea Hunter. The waves were getting higher and the two ships were banging furiously against each other. After waking Capt. Gary and Greg to inform them, the decision was made to unhook before some serious damage was done, or worse, someone could get hurt. After checking the forecast, the weather looked like it would get worse throughout the next few days. This was really a disappointment for us all as our season had just begun and we were so ready to work, however, Mother Nature had other plans.
The decision had been made earlier that if the weather turned, we would head to Provincetown, MA. It was much closer than heading to our home port, and we could anchor in the safety of the harbor and wait for the weather to subside. So both ships steamed towards Provincetown. Trying to look at the bright side, I figured that since I had never been there, what the heck, I’d get to explore a new town and shop. What girl wouldn’t jump at that opportunity? Unfortunately, it’s not like a regular job where at the end of the day, you leave and the night is yours. We were on a ship, about a mile offshore and the only way to land was by our tender (Mini me). We also had to get approval from Greg and that could be touchy, to say the least.
Throughout the day, anchored off of P’ Town (Provincetown) everyone kept busy with the endless little things that go wrong on a ship. We all talked about going ashore after work, but no one wanted to ask Greg. Because I was his sister, they all agreed I should do it. His mood wasn’t the best, due to only having one day on the site, however, while helping me prepare dinner he seemed in better spirits. I suggested we all go to shore, as I know Greg enjoys a cold one now and then. He finally decided that since we would probably be stuck there for a few days, that part of the crew could go that night and the others could go the following night. This seemed to satisfy everyone.
After dinner Julia and six of the crew headed into town. Scott, our new captain was in charge of taking them ashore on Mini Me and bringing everyone safely back by ten o’clock. The rest of us planned on going the following evening. (This turned out to be a great decision on my part). Ten o’clock came and went with no sign of the crew. By 10:30 Greg was pretty upset. Gary called Mini Me with the ship’s VHF radio, but there was no response. We tried calling a few of their cell phones but that too, was in vain. By 11:00, being upset turned to concern. We all knew that Scott was a responsible family man that didn’t drink and there was no way he wouldn’t answer our call. Everyone on the Sea Hunter was aware of the situation including the guards and cameramen. Finally after numerous calls to Mini Me, one of the new crewmembers, Dennis answered the call. We could tell from his speech he was quite intoxicated. He said that Scott was passed out on the floor of the boat and he couldn’t find the rest of the crew. I can tell you, that did not sit well with Greg. He told Gary to relay to Dennis that they better be back within a half an hour or there would be dire consequences.
It was about an hour later that we received the call that they were all found and were headed back to the Sea Hunter. Greg had ordered Gary to put a scare in them once they were aboard. He was to tell them they were all fired and would have to leave the ship in the morning. He didn’t really intend to fire them but wanted to teach them a lesson. Gary was hesitant to do this but respected Greg’s decision. It was not a pretty sight when they all climbed aboard and every one of them was two sheets to the wind (drunk!) Both of the cameramen were ready with film rolling as they stood on deck knowing that they had screwed up big time. Greg and I were on the second deck out of site but watching the entire thing. Gary started off explaining how disappointed both he and Greg were with their lack of responsibility. That they were chosen to be part of a once in a lifetime opportunity and they threw it away for one evening of irresponsibility. Julia was insisting it was all her fault. She had ordered everyone a shot and that was how it all started. It didn’t matter, said Gary as everyone is responsible for their own actions.
This news didn’t sit well with some of them. A couple of the guys decided they were leaving right then (even though they had no way to get ashore). They both started packing up their gear and throwing it from their room onto the deck. Julia found me and Greg still sitting on the fossil deck. In slurred speech she kept repeating herself, “I’m fired? Really, I’m fired”, to which Greg would reply “yes”. She stomped off with her hands in the air, stating that six months of her life (she was 24) were wasted, down the drain. We both found it quite comical.
Gary calmed the situation down by suggesting everyone go to bed and sleep it off, that we would discuss it again in the morning. This seemed to work, as one by one they went off to bed.

Toryn (camerman) and Mac (security guard) listening to Greg’s speech.

Needless to say, everyone that went ashore the night before woke with a different attitude. They went from being loud and arrogant to quiet and humble. They realized what they had done and how much there was to lose, all for one night of drinking. Each one went to both Gary and Greg and apologized for their actions. They truly were sorry. Greg gathered us all together for a meeting. He reminded everyone to think about the reason they were there. That he had hundreds of applications from people all over the United States that wanted their jobs, but he had chosen us. He reminded us of how much we had already been through and that it was just the beginning and why would we throw it all away? I remember looking at the faces of the crew as Greg spoke. They were really listening to what he was saying and it was hitting home. Greg had a knack for making you like crap, but then turning it around and building you up to feel like anything was possible. You just had to keep your focus and believe. And at the end of his speech, everyone was pumped and ready. We all believed!

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