(This blog is about my experiences working and living aboard a 220’ treasure hunting ship, the M/V Sea Hunter)
I recently asked the crew to share some information about themselves. With their answers and what I’ve observed working and living with them, now you can get to know them a little better.
About a year ago, Sub Sea Research was looking to hire a 2nd engineer. Once Greg put an ad on the company website, along with word of mouth from the crew, we were inundated with applicants. We first hired a local person and fortunately (yes, I said fortunately) he didn’t work out. Why do I say that? Because along came Eddie Borges. One of the kindest, most patient and hardest worker’s I’ve ever met.
Prior to coming to work for SSR, Eddie was active military, but once his time was up he had a rough time finding full time work. He did any side job that came along to help support his family. While stationed in Brunswick, Maine Eddie met our chief engineer, Brian Ryder. Brian had previously worked with Eddie’s wife on a security job. Brian found out that Eddie had experience in the aviation field as a mechanic and machinist. Knowing he was looking for full time work and wanting to help his family, Brian spoke with Greg and the crew and it was decided to give him a shot.
I wasn’t sure upon first impressions that Eddie would fit in with the crew. He was both shy and timid which can be very tough around our crew. However, it didn’t take long before we all knew we wanted Eddie to stay. When I say he was a hard worker, I am not saying that lightly. He spends the majority of his day working in the engine room of the M/V Sea Hunter. The engine room is large, smelly and is extremely loud. He will work from early morning till six or seven at night, only coming up for meals. When Eddie comes out of the engine room door (which is in the galley) he is usually covered in grease, has his head set on to muffle the noises and greets you with a hello and a smile, each and every time.
Though he had no prior experience working on the ocean, it didn’t take long for him to fall in love with the job. With a positive “can do” attitude, Eddie helps to maintain and repair the mechanics on board. There is always a project on an older ship. As Eddie says “I make stuff happen!”
There is no doubt how much he loves his wife and girls. Each morning and each evening he speaks to them on his cell. It’s tough on him being on the ship during the week and only seeing them on weekends. However he is grateful for the opportunity to work at something he loves, as not providing for his family is his biggest fear. But according to Eddie it’s not a job if you are doing something you love.
As I walked into the galley early one morning I noticed some dirty dishes in the sink. Those on the ship know that after the evening meal, I clean the galley and expect it to stay that way until morning. If the guys get something to eat later, they are expected to put the dishes in the dishwasher. So waking to a sink of dirty dishes was not how I wanted to start my morning. As I began loading them into the dishwasher, what do I see sitting on the counter but a chocolate cake. It was obvious it wasn’t store bought, but where did it come from? I have never seen any of the crew bake (except Greg and he wasn’t there at that time). One by one the crew started walking in to get coffee. Knowing Brian’s room is next to the galley I asked him where the cake came from. “Eddie” he says couldn’t sleep so at one in the morning he decided to bake. He has a sweet tooth and it helps relax him.
How could I get mad at that? He works long and hard every day, will stop whatever he is doing to help his fellow crew members and does it all with grace. Eddie is one of a kind. However, me being me, I did remind him that next time he used the galley….clean up or else.