I like to say I'm an "all around go-to crew," especially for the first two months aboard any vessel. Switching jobs is fine, keeps things interesting. By the third month I will start bitching about all the "fails" that are hard to live with, so lately I've been sticking with short contracts. My dream job as far as pay and duty and contract length would be cooking aboard a tug, but most tug cooks have to handle lines on the tug and that's pretty dangerous. My first stint aboard a Crowley tug and fuel barge tow found me to be a great linehandler aboard the barge, and a good cook, but nervous when it came to approaching heavily loaded lines aboard the tug. The captain liked my cooking and barge linehandling so much that he said he'd make it so I didn't have to handle lines aboard the tug, but I declined. The last thing I want are shipmates resenting me for only being required to perform less dangerous duty. On sailtraining boats, fiberglass sloops and tour boats I can work as deckhand, cook, captain, mate, steward, whatever. Not engineer...yet. That's on the list for classes I need to take. It doesn't feel right to spend so much time aboard diesel powered boats and be clueless as to how to fix anything other than a clogged sea strainer or jumping the solenoid. Although so far that's the only trouble I've ever had when sans engineer. Oh and I can bleed the fuel injection system but that's about it. So... I like to cook when it's apparent that the crew likes my food and they are happy, but I don't have a "passion" for cooking and I wouldn't call myself a cook if someone asked what I did for a living. NOT to say I'm a bad cook. I'm not. I haven't met anyone who hates my cooking. But overall, it's more exciting and satisfying to drive a boat or work as a mate or bosun. Go-to crew are the best to have aboard. Everyone knows every job and is completely aware of the boat and others' needs at all times.
So, next on the list: learn marine diesels and electrical better. Become the ULTIMATE go to crew. Oh, and work on a fishing boat for a few weeks. Just to see what it's like.