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The Crew's First Impressions

Hear what the new crew thought of one another (and Captain Lee).

Meet the New Crew!

Kate Chastain

How to Watch

Catch up on Below Deck on Peacock or the Bravo App. How did you spend your last few days before this charter season began?
Kate Chastain: Our charter season started in January, so before I flew out to the Bahamas I was home with my family and friends for the holidays. The week before any charter season begins there are always a few errands to run and things to stock up on, but for the most part I try to relax as much as possible knowing that I'm headed into a few month with no down time. What was your first impression of your new crew mates?
KC: I try to be optimistic and give everyone the benefit of the doubt at first, but within the first five minutes of meeting Leon, I just knew we were not going to get along. Usually when joining a new boat, everyone tries to be as polite as possible. When it comes to yachting, our job is stressful enough, so it's kind of an unspoken code of conduct that crew pay extra attention to minding their manners while onboard. Being positive and respectful with others is the standard, and this is not something Leon seemed to understand. When I (cheerfully) told him that we were going to be roommates, straight away he started grilling me on my bathroom cleanliness. It was just too aggressive/too soon and pretty much set the tone for our working relationship the rest of the season. When I first met Rocky however, I really liked her. I could tell she was a bit wild, but I appreciated her upbeat energy and knew she would be a lot of fun…I just hoped she wouldn't be too much fun when it came time to work. Unlike Leon. From the start it was clear that Emile had some solid yachting experience behind him. Hardworking and helpful, Emile arrived with positivity and a team player attitude, two things every real yachtie knows to bring with them onto a new boat. Unlike Leon. Don and I worked together on a yacht last summer, so it was great to see him. He was still the same old goofy Donnie that I remembered, I just hoped that the rest of the crew would get along with him. I know from experience that he can be a lot to handle at first, but once you get to know him, he is one of the sweetest and funniest people on the planet and really great at boosting morale when times get tough. Unlike Leon. Finally, seeing Connie walk onboard was the best surprise ever. I know her from home and have been trying to get her into yachting for years, so I was super excited that she would be working with us this season. She's the type of person that can make the best out of any situation. Unlike Leon. Were you excited to see Eddie and Amy again?
KC: With all of these new crew members, it was kind of a relief to see that Eddie and Amy were back, because I know they are good at their jobs and I know what to expect with them. Honestly though, because Eddie and I are in charge of separate departments, we never really got a chance to know each other that well last season. Amy and I, on the other hand, had some troubles on Ohana, so part of me wasn't thrilled to be working with her again. However I tried to keep in mind that we did get along well at first and the fact that she was willing to work with me again gave me a bit go hope that we could possibly put our past differences behind us and get back to the friendship we had in the beginning.

Eddie Lucas How did you spend your last few days before this charter season began?
Eddie Lucas: I spent the last few days hanging with friends, working, and packing everything I needed for the season in the Bahamas. What was your first impression of your new crew mates?
EL: My first impression of the new crew was mostly good. Connie seemed like a badass, Don was a meathead, Emile was South African, Rocky was crazy, and Leon had big shoes to fill. Were you excited to see Kate and Amy again?
EL: Yes!

Amy Johnson How did you spend your last few days before this charter season began?
Amy Johnson: Before I took off for the Bahamas, I spent my last few days of freedom relaxing and hanging out with friends. When I'm getting ready for a busy charter season, I try and get as much rest and relaxation as possible, because I know I won't be getting much on the boat. What was your first impression of your new crew mates?
AJ: It's always interesting meeting your new crew mates. It's like the first day of school -- meeting your teacher, your classmates, picking out your desk (or bunk in this situation). It was exciting to see so many new faces, I like the energy and enthusiasm everyone has, and I'm just hoping we can all work well together. Were you excited to see Eddie and Kate again?
AJ: I was definitely excited to see Eddie, he has become a great friend and I was looking forward to working another season with him! I had mixed feelings about Kate -- she is fantastic at her job, but because of the conflicts we had last season, I wasn't sure how it would be working together again. What’s Kelley been up to?
AJ: Kelley is doing great; he is the first mate on a large yacht that is traveling the NE coast right now. When he isn't working, he is out on the water, doing what he loves -- fishing.

Emile Kotze How did you spend your last few days before this charter season began?
Emile Kotze: I said my goodbyes to my family up in New York, saw some friends, said my goodbyes, and hit some clubs in Miami! What was your first impression of your new crew mates?
EK: My impression of the crew at first glance…

Eddie: Seemed like a pretty nice, simple guy

Kate: Not easy for me to read Kate at all, haha! But I can tell she is an experienced yachting professional.

Connie: Immediately she had me smiling and laughing. She is just awesome and a smartass, "cough cough." She told me about her family, her father and brother, and I immediately related to her. Working with Connie is like working with your bro, haha!

Leon: We are both the foreign imports on this boat, and he is a steady guy with a good head on his shoulders. Cool and calm, and he loves his daughters!

Don: The boat needs its tools to work... Don is a big guy with a big heart. Don is patchy at first, but things will come around!

Amy: Sweet and kind. You have to love that Texas accent!

Rocky: Wow, she is going to be interesting. If you capture the amount of energy she puts out into the world, it would never go dark! She seems like a fun challenge. Scary, but who doesn't like a bit of thrill! What was your first impression of Captain Lee?
EK: Well he seemed like a wise character -- a man full of stories someone that I could learn a great deal from. I really liked his stature. I would definitely enjoy working under his guidance on this vessel. Funny, fair, straightforward, and kind.

Raquel “Rocky” Dakota How did you spend your last few days before this charter season began?
Rocky Dakota: I spent the last days before charter living it up, skiing, and snowboarding in Aspen, CO. I like a balance of mountain, sea, and city! What was your first impression of your new crew mates?
RD: My first impression of my new crew mates... Hmm, I feel like I'm an energy reader, so I wanted to ask questions and get to know them better since we're going to be stuck with each other. Once you know everyone's vibe, you can decide who you want to wear ear plugs with. What was your first impression of Captain Lee?
RD: Captain Lee looked like a nice guy. Everyone deserves to be greeted with the same respect. I always try to have an Aloha spirit with whomever I meet.

Connie Arias How did you spend your last few days before this charter season began?
Connie Arias: I spent my last few days before this charter season hanging out with family and friends, fishing, and watching football. I'm a huge Dallas Cowboys fan, so Sunday for me is the ultimate day. We usually start out with mimosas at the local fish market and then depending on game time, either go for a quick boat ride or hang around and watch the game while my mom makes some amazing Italian food. What was your first impression of your new crew mates?
CA: I try not to judge right away, but sometimes it just happens...

Kate: I knew Kate from home, and I think she is fantastic, so I was really happy she was there. She has been excellent in pointing me in the right direction, so I'm really looking forward to working with her.

Amy: I knew Amy would be great, because she's also a Cowboys fan and her extreme cheerfulness is fun to be around. Amy is simple -- supper happy, fun, young, and single. I see us meshing well.

Eddie: Eddie seems really laid back and awesome. He's really easy to talk to and is an excellent teacher.

Emile: This kid is super cute and his accent... Oh and he's my roommate?! At this point I was really looking forward to this season and boat life.

Rocky: Holy sh--, this chick is crazy! She's loud and has crazy hair, she’s going to be fun!

Don: Don is super nice, but the more I see, the more worried I'm getting about him. Beginning with the fact that I thought they messed up and accidentally gave him Kate's uniforms but then I realized he just prefers shmediums. And then he downed five raw eggs for breakfast and I had seen enough of DonDon. What was your first impression of Captain Lee?
CA: When I first saw Captain Lee, I got nervous enough that I almost ran back down the dock and straight back to the airport. The silver fox had his pants perfectly ironed, his shirt neatly tucked in, and a very stern look on his face -- this man meant business. But we quickly started talking and I found out he loved to fish and dive, and he's actually super friendly and an amazingly nice guy. I was extremely excited that I would have the chance to work for him.

Don Abenante How did you spend your last few days before this charter season began?
Don Abenante: I spent my last few days before the season at Marteen after I sailed down from Newport! I was laying by the beach and cruising around at Marteen on a scooter with vodka and sodas on tap What was your first impression of your new crew mates?
DA: The crew looked amazing and seemed so nice, especially Kate and Amy. I could tell Emile was trouble by some of his remarks. What was your first impression of Captain Lee?
DA: Captain Lee looked like a rad, laidback captain who was very sincere. But you could also tell he was trigger happy to lay out those flights home!

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