My daughter is now 6, but it wasn't that long ago that she was still trying out new words. The first time I heard her try to say "activate" I had just picked up my phone, and had accidentally held the home button down long enough to turn on Siri. My daughter promptly said "uh oh! You actimated Siri!" To this day, in our house we still use the word "actimate" quite regularly.
After my contact with Jeff, I found a frequency of my own, and quickly racked up enough contacts to bring my total for this park past the 44 mark (the US awards only require 10 per park, but I like to shoot for 44 because that's where most of.the international awards kick in.)
With an easy power solution for the second evening, I was able to dive right in to making more contacts. With the pressure off, I started out in CW. This was a particularly exciting one for me, not because I made a lot of contacts, but because I upped my speed a little bit. I leaned CW using the PC program Just Learn Morse Code, which uses the Koch/Farnsworth method. As I practice I've been using faster character speeds, and faster word speeds, but on the air I've been hesitant, so prior to now I was keeping my keyer set at 5 wpm. This time I decided to bump it up to 7 wpm, and I found it was actually easier for me to copy stations at this faster speed, because it's closer to what I've been practicing. After a few more like this I just might have to bump the speed up to 10 wpm and have a go!
Anyway, with plenty of SSB contacts, and a few more CW contacts under my belt, I was in good spirits as I packed up and headed out. I don't know what park I'll end up at next, but I hope I have just as much fun as I did at Mashamoquet!
As a final note, if any of you are CW newbies like me (or seasoned pros for that matter) check out the ditdit.fm podcast - it's a new one, all about CW. For me it has been a good resource for tips and hints from the CW pros. It's also nice to hear the top notch operators talk about their experiences when they were in my shoes - great stuff!