Sometimes it’s easier to make a contact 4,000 miles away than it is to make one 900 miles away.
I got a nice DX contact with Dave, 9A5BWW, in Croatia this afternoon on 20 meters. I could tell he was having problems copying my signal because I had to repeat my call several times, but I’m getting used to that.
I had a ragchew with Pierre, VA2PW, out of Quebec. He was kind enough to turn his beam towards my heading, which amplified an already loud signal. I have to admit, I have trouble coming up with things to talk about on ragchews. I’ve never been a big talker, unless it’s a topic I’m really familiar with, like video editing or photography. But there is something to be said for actually getting to know someone you contact, rather than just exchange the “59” report, name and state. It makes the contact meaningful, despite my own shortcomings.
Right before I cut off the rig, I had a beautiful contact with Manuel, EA8CEQ, on the Canary Islands. He had a booming signal into the Southeast that greatly improved as I listened. Located off the northwest coast of Africa, the Canary Islands are nearly 3,700 miles from my location!
All three of my contacts today had trouble copying my call. The “DSD” portion of my call seems to cause a lot of problems, stateside and everywhere else. I recall complaining one evening on a local net that folks should always use the NATO phonetics, but for some reason “delta sierra” either does not cut through noise well or I don’t articulate my call well. I’ve been reverting to the common “David-sugar-David” as an alternate phonetic and that seems to get through with more success.
I was looking forward to working some stations on 10 meters today, since I had the day off today and could actually try working some stations in the daylight. 10 was just dead over my gridsquare, although there was a sporadic-E opening to the northwest. I heard three separate CW beacon stations and some weak phone stations, but not much else.
This month’s CARC meeting is tonight; Charlotte Hamfest on Saturday. It’s a nice week to be a ham!