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Six seasons in as chief stewardess and Kate Chastain’s behavior still surprises her on Bravo’s Below Deck.
"I always surprise myself, I'm full of surprises," the 36-year-old reality star teases ET of what’s to come in the show's seventh season. "I didn't technically go overboard but I did kind of jump ship."
That "jump ship" moment was first teased in the season trailer, which sees a seemingly drunk Ashton Pienaar, this season's bosun, confront a seemingly drunk Kate, ominously telling her, "Everybody feels that way about you, Kate!" Kate then tells him, "OK, great. Go find another chief stew. I quit," before telling her fellow stewardesses to not follow her as she exits the yacht.
"I went off into the Thailand night," she jokes. "I was just frustrated. It was close quarters, and it was towards the end of the season and, in that moment, it was just kind of one of those, 'Eff you, eff you, you're cool, I'm out' [moments]."
"You know, yachting is just a very stressful situation," she notes. "Close quarters, long hours and some people just can't make it the whole season for one reason or another."
Now, fans will have to wait to see if or how Kate returns from her journey into the Thailand night, but it seems safe to assume she isn’t gone for good. Though, she says, Captain Lee Rosbach had no idea she had abandoned ship that night.
"I think he was very surprised when he called for his morning coffee and it wasn't arriving," she offers, revealing they had a conversation about it later. "I mean, he supported me no matter what, but there was a bit of disappointment. On both sides -- he was disappointed that I got to that level of frustration, he was disappointed that I walked off the boat and I was disappointed that I disappointed him."
A big part of Kate’s frustration this charter season would appear to lie with the new chef, Kevin Dobson. In the trailer, he’s seen telling Kate, "No, I don’t think you’re a good chief stew," and, "You’re not the special superstar that you think you are. F**k off."
"Even if I don't like a chef, I try to fake it because it only makes my life easier, if he thinks I love him," Kate shares. "But he made that pretty difficult."
"At first, I loved him because he's from New Zealand and, in my experience, everyone from New Zealand is just so nice," she adds. "Like, Australians are more macho and kiwis are just really sweet and sensitive, but it turns out he spends a lot of time in Australia."
"I think if you're the best chef in the world, you should just be confident and nice," she continues. "I don't know if it was overcompensation or maybe he's just spent too much time out of New Zealand."
Kate took more of a liking to the two new deckhands onboard motor yacht Valor this season, Tanner Sterback and Brian de Saint Pern.
"Ashton is going to be so mad at me, but, like, you know, last year, Ashton was kind of like beefcake of the deck crew? He’s, like, the least attractive this year!" she admits. "That’s how hot they are! We got hotties!"
"[Brian’s] the hot one," she gushes. "I don't, like, have a crush on him, he's just, like -- it's a Porsche. I don't want to hook up with a Porsche, but I enjoy looking at it. I appreciate it's beauty. Like, we were having dinner and I had the deckhands -- we were serving dinner and I had the deckhands do something with their tops off because they’re hot. And, I mean, all-female charters really wanted it, and Captain Lee was eating with them and then after dinner Captain Lee came in and was like, 'Did you see Brian with his shirt off?' Like, even Captain Lee was like, 'Whoa!'"
Overall, Kate found the whole charter season to be steamy -- both literally and figuratively.
"It was hot!" she confesses. "In all the ways. Our deck crew is hot, Thailand is hot. It’s just a very hot season. And there's a lot of romance this season."
For more on Kate’s thoughts on season seven (including what she thinks of her stews) check out the video above. Below Deck airs Mondays at 9 p.m. ET on Bravo.