I did a very cool thing. The International Space Station was to pass reasonably close to my position, though it would be pretty low on the horizon. I hooked up my handheld radio to an external antenna (a Buddistick) tuned to the 20m band and was able to hear a faint conversation for a few seconds! This was the first time I tried! I look forward to a closer pass so I will have more time and a stronger signal. I didn’t try to transmit to the ISS, of course.
Penjing nearly miraculously survived the winter and beginning to get back some leaves. I thought it was a goner a couple times, having lost all its leaves and then again and again losing the little that sprouted out. The other Fukien Tea indeed did die. Penzai the Chinese Elm did just fine as did Irohamomiji, the Japanese Maple. Penjing took ill during one of my trips, when the person who was to water… didn’t. Enough of that. I expect it is past the crisis.
Here is Penjing listening to the ISS, on 144.800 MHz.
“But Father! But Father!” some of you are probably grumbling, “Isn’t that radio overkill for the sake of listening to Bill Bennett, Rush and Hugh Hewitt?”
It would indeed be over kill for mere commercial AM and FM broadcasts, but I am also studying for my Technician (entry) level amateur license.
One of you kind readers sent me the radio (thanks MZ!) and, as I started to dig into it, my interest in radio revived from its many decades long slumber. I think I could walk in and pass the test handily right now, but I would like to get my Morse Code certificate as well so I could do some low power, CW. As part of my study and as time allows I have been watching each evening an episode of Inspector Morse, which seems appropriate. I would eventually like to take some paramedic courses against the day when I might also be of help as part of a volunteer network. It would be good to have a priest involved.
And we all know, don’t we, that Ham Radio will be useful at TEOTWAWKI.
I would like eventually to find Catholic Hams and, especially, clerical Hams! It could be fund to start a group of priests. I know one priest Ham whom I will dub my honorary “Elmer”, though he hasn’t been on air for a long time.