Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Where Did He Go?

Thought for the day:  The more we learn about the people around the world, the smaller and friendlier the world becomes.

[THEME: Amateur radio]


Can't say that I knew much about it before I got into amateur radio, but my experiences on the air have taught me more about world geography than I ever learned in school.

But my reasons for liking Uzbekistan in particular?

 Story time.

My husband and I often operated on the air at the same time. Not that big a deal, really. He'd be on one side of the room,  I'd be on the other, and we simply didn't operate on the same part of the radio spectrum at the same time.

But we DID use antennas that were mounted on the same tower.

HIS tower. Matter of fact, HIS antennas, too.

So, one day, I was at my station operating 20 meters, (great for worldwide contacts) and my hubby was on the other side of the room at his station operating 6 meters. (AKA "the magic band" because of its unpredictable behavior) I was chatting with a gentleman in Uzbekistan, and copying down his information, when all of a sudden, the signal disappeared. Just, BOOM! Now ya hear him, now ya don't.

You see, even though we were using two different antennas, they were both controlled by a single rotator. Which my husband happened to rotate. So, he was able to tune in the station he was chasing, but I lost mine.

But it was HIS tower. HIS antennas. HIS rotator.

So I was outta luck. Not happy about it, but I couldn't very well complain. (Did I mention it was HIS tower?)


This is MY tower, and MY antennas, which my sweet husband put up soon after that incident.

                                  So, yes ...  I'm rather fond of good ol' Uzbekistan.


  1. Great post! You seem to have chosen your husband wisely. I hope my wife feels she did too.

  2. I'm glad to see the second antenna! It's hard to be a solid "we" when we're focused on "me" and "mine"... ;^)

  3. Glad it all worked out OK - your husband is evidently a tower of strength! The whole radio thing sounds fascinating - did you ever get back to the man in Uzbekistan? (I knew I'd have to go back to your original post, for the spelling of that)

  4. Every gal needs her own tower (and her own tiara, knight in shining armour...).

  5. Aw...now you have HIS and HERS. Love antennas. :-) Great story!

  6. Hurray for Uzbekistan. I've always thought that you ham radio guys will save our day. Long after they remove the computers, the radio will save us.
    Nice antenna.

  7. Geo- I like to think I chose wisely, or as we say, I let him chase me until I caught him. And I suspect your wife chose wisely, too.

    Arleen- You've got that right.

    Chris- You're right. Kinda like the "there's no I in team" approach. Now, we have so many antennas and towers at our place, other hams show 'em to their non-ham wives and say, "See what THEY have? I only want ONE tower..."

    Karla- HA! Indeed, he is a "tower of strength". No, I never did get back to that particular ham in Uzbekistan but I've spoken to many other hams there.

    Delores- I believe I'll skip the tiara. Doesn't go well with my sweatpants and slippers.

    Tracy Jo- Our ham buddies love the story, too. His and hers towers has such a nice ring to it.

    Manzie- Well, ham radio guys saved the world in the movie "Independence Day", anyway? They used Morse code to coordinate a response to the aliens ...

  8. This gave me a good laugh! And made me realize (once again) how important giving and compromise are in life.

  9. Liza- Glad to make ya laugh. Yep, Compromise is our middle name.

    Carrie- Still not sure. More like a half-breed.

  10. I love meeting people from other countries, even if it's not face to face. I'm happy you have your own tower now. You deserve it.


  11. You and your husband are a great team. I've always wanted to go to Usbekistan but via Almaty, Khazakstan. My husband did his thesis on the silk road; I was the typist. There's an overnight flight from Latvia that goes to Almaty. One day . . . .

    About Vietnam . . . I understand. My husband was with 9th Marines in the I Corps. We first went to Vietnam with a return veterans group. I was hesitant because I feared it would be, well, filled with ghosts. But I've never been on a trip that was more laughter-filled. Each of the veterans had a story to tell, but more important than the telling was they were there together laughing and bonding in a different way. I wish every veteran could make the trip.

  12. How wonderful that your husband built you your very own tower! I think Delores summed it up best! Julie

  13. Janie- If you enjoy meeting people from other countries, you'd probably enjoy amateur radio. We've even met a bunch of hams from other countries face-to-face. Thanks for the comment about the tower. That was quite a few years ago that we got the second tower, and there have been another three added since then, and a boatload of antennas to go with them.

    Kittie- Sounds like you may have another exciting trip in your future. As for Nam, my husband and brother were both in I Corps, too. (Small world, huh?) My brother was with the Marines, at the MAW In Chu Lai, and my hubby was with the Army's Americal Division, and every few months, would get pulled back out of the field to spend a few days in Chu Lai. Toward the end of his tour, he manned an observation tower there.

    Julie- Yeah, it really was pretty cool. I don't know any other ham family with his and hers towers.

  14. When I was teaching, we sent a plush moose from Maine to visit a class in Uzbekistan for a month. It was a wonderful experience.
    I'm so glad you got your own tower. Every princess needs a tower!

  15. Donna- Very neat. I can't help but wonder if the school in Uzbekistan sent something to your school for a month's visit, too.

  16. Very cool that you each have your own antenna! And, it's fun to think of you sitting there chatting away with someone in Uzbekistan.

  17. Julie- It is extremely cool. We now have so many antennas, one of our friends said if a bird died while flying over our yard, it'd bounce around like a ball in a pachinko game before it hit the ground.

  18. Suze- I know! Sure beats a stupid set of embroidered towels!

  19. Hi Susan .. I'm coming in again at U - to try and get a grip with the whole great concept of amateur radio .. and now Uzbekistan ..

    Was this chap 'talking' English?

    Amazing .. cheers Hilary

    PS I'll enjoy a re-read through to get a comprehensive scan-up ..

  20. Hi, Hilary. How industrious you are to pick up past posts! I am duly impressed. And yes, he was speaking English, which is the universal language for international radio contacts.