Licensed in 1994, when CW skills were a mandatory requirement.
I got my first HF radio in 1999 and I was eager to work CW, but I was rusty due to inactivity all these five years. One day, I replied to a CQing G-land station, but my anxiety and nervousness did not permit me to have a normal QSO. Instead, it was a complete failure. I was so embarrassed that I sent him a regular, paper letter apologizing for my incompetence.
Since then, I did not touch the key again. The last years though, the last several years, I was struggling to polish my CW skills on my own, but in vain. I could not get into the air! I was asking other hams for assistance, but I was told, “Why you need this? CW is dead now, even commercial ships have abandoned it, you need only to copy your callsign, What will you do with this mutephone (an invented, derogatory wording, to contrast with microphone).”
I was lucky enough to meet Fanis, SV2BBK once, who told me about CW Academy, when I explained to him my drama. I did not know about CW Academy until then! So, I attended Fundamental to Advanced classes and only then I could be on the air! I wish to give back to the community the merits and the satisfaction I enjoy now by operating in CW. That is why I was Advisor as well, in Spring 2022, but my QRL demands to travel abroad frequently. It was quite challenging to Advise two classes from a hotel or to replace the cancelled weekly lesson, because my return flight was exactly at the time of the lesson! In 9H or LZ, I could and can have hotel operation, but in SU, no way! I need a permanent address there, I have been told. So, I plan to be back in Advising when my QRL obligations set me free, hopefully shortly!
I am deeply convinced that CW Academy is a precious asset of CWops and International Amateur radio community. Challenges lie for those who wish to register at CW Academy, but English still is a language barrier for them, but we are working on it… I thank Hanz, YL3JD for his advising and genuine support, John, 9H1XT, who hosted me several evenings at his shack, for my CWT training during the Advanced class, (I had no antenna at the hotel then), Helga, IN3FHE, Zaba, OH1ZAA, and Gerald, PA2G who supported my nomination by Fanis, SV2BBK! Thanks Fanis!
Let me paraphrase a saying a Director at QRL told me once, as “Those who can, CW, those who can’t, either SSB or Digital.”This biography is what appeared in Solid Copy when the member joined CWops.