My first trip on the UMKA lasted from 4th of June 1998 to 17th of July, and was not a happy time for me.
I was completely stressed out about our finances and conditions on Umka were awful, so awful in fact that I swore I was not going back.
My colleague, Tom from Elgin, had realised very early on that I knew next to nothing about ROV’s, and he very kindly took me under his wing, to protect me from the Italians on day shift and to teach me something of the workings of the Seaeye Surveyor on board.
He was a good teacher and he patiently explained things to me on the few times that we dived during the six weeks of so.
It was very difficult for me to understand the Sonar screen, and how what I was seeing related to where the ROV was, and what it was looking at. It took a while and a lot of stupid (in hindsight) questions before the penny dropped, then what a revelation.