Monday, July 17, 2006

VooDudes and Kure presentations

I was thinking about my trip to Dayton today. It was my first time at the Hamvention and, to be honest, I was a bit overwhelmed. I began the trip with a short drive down to Newington to attend a talk given by Roger Western G3SXW, author of Up Two Adventures of a DXpeditioner and Contesting in Africa Multi-Multi on the Equator (which is really by the VooDoo contest group). I own and had read both books. Mr. Western was kind enough to both sign my copy of Contesting in Africa and indulge me with a photograph with the two of us together.
Roger Western and Scott Andersen
The venue for the presentation was the first floor conference room at ARRL headquarters and the talk lasted about two hours including the Q&A session. Certainly there was lots of discussions about equipment, storage, border crossing adventures, and negotiations with, well, practically every bureaucrat and business man within arms reach, but there was also a great deal in the presentation about the local people, customs, music, and how they live.
It is difficult to imagine people more dedicated, hardworking, and competitive than the VooDudes (as they like to be called), yet they took the time to "stop and smell the roses". I have to remind myself to do that occasionally, too.
The other thing that triggered these thoughts about DXpedition presentations was a newspaper article Sandy had given me today on the new Hawaiian wildlife refuge. On the map showing the area now protected is Kure atoll, home of the recent K7C DXpedition, way off to the west. I had seen Ann Santos WA1S speak this spring and part of her presentation was a short video of that trip. She'll be speaking again at Boxboro at the DX dinner. If you can, come and see the show. She's an excellent speaker and, if you're like me at all, her tale will fill you with the sense of adventure that will make you want to go out and try this stuff yourself--even if your plan is a bit more modest!
These very experienced DXpeditioners do come out and speak now and then. I urge you to make that club meeting or convention to see them, talk to them, and learn from them. Stop and smell the roses. You'll be glad you did.


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