Beechlog‎ > ‎Feb 2000‎ > ‎


The on-line magazine of the Burnham Beeches Radio Club.

I sort of doze for perhaps two hours. The cabin crew are bringing our breakfast, landing is expected in an hour or so. It's still dark, but I can see lights below so we must have reached Ireland. There are some towns well lit up. The pilot announces we are just approaching the Isle of Man, and landing is due in half an hour.
Up comes the sun, a red glow reaches out across the horizon. It's quite cloudy now, and the ground has disappeared from sight. Half an hour passes, and the pilot speaks again. As it's the rush hour, we'll have to do a few circuits while we wait in the queue to land. Five minutes later "don't worry if you see any other aircraft, they may seem close but it's an optical illusion, they will be at least 1000 feet from us in altitude". As he says it, a United aircraft appears, which we overtake. Then the moon. We pass the moon five times, then descend into the clouds. When we get beneath the cloud we are over the Thames, I can see the bridges at Kingston and Richmond. In no time we descend rapidly, and skim over the rooftops. A very smooth landing, and the trip is over.

Well, except for about 15 minutes before the luggage arrives on the carousel. But as I emerge through the customs hall, the taxi driver is waiting for me. Well two drivers holding my company name, so I guess I was not the only employee on the flight. I didn't see anyone else...

Thats it for now, next week it's off to Cyprus (and warmth), what a start to the year.

Roger G0HZK

Letter from America

I have to say that I'm very disappointed with all things radio here in the States. Whilst at first I was in awe of the 'space' they have to do stuff and the fact that they have a very different band plan to ours I very quickly became disenchanted with it. Perhaps my disenchantment is not with the radio but with the operators, or lack of them.

For a country with almost 700,000 licensed operators and a city with almost 15,000 licence holders you'd think that the bands would be teaming with activity. Not so. The only time I had a more fruitless radio expedition was in Germany.

And as for experimentation, forget it. I recently learned an expression, its called '/JFDI' and its applied to all instructions when you can't be bothered with the fussing about. '/JFDI' or Just F!@#$%^ Do It is a lesson they could use here.

Take, for example, my latest escapade with the local ARES (RayNet) group. As a reward for our 'Y2K Non-Event' efforts the St Vincent's Hospital Group offered us the use of their training facilities in all of the hospitals in the 5 boroughs (NYC is made up of 5 admin districts). As it turns out there are 5 boro ARES groups and 5 hospitals so we can have one each. They also graciously allowed us exclusive roof rights to the St Viny's on Staten Island. This meant that we could have our repeater, which had been in storage for almost 9 months, operating again.

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