Yeah, I'm a ham...in more than one way!!  I've been a licensed amateur radio operator since 1982. 

I was stationed overseas in Europe when I got my first license.  That meant my mailing address was APO, NY.  So, even though my home QTH and station location was in Texas, I got a 2-area call for my first call!!!  I was KA2PTJ for a few years.  I got my reciprocal license in Germany and operated as DA2QG for quite a while.

I went in to upgrade to Advanced while on a stateside assignment in 1987.  I got to the testing location early, before the code tests began.  At that time, the upgrade to Advanced was just a written test and we still had code tests for Novice/Technican, General, and Extra Class.  I had struggled with the code to get to General (13wpm), but had been practicing and using it on the air.  Since the code exams hadn't begun, I decided to sign up and take the Extra Class (20wpm) just for practice.  Wouldn't hurt, as I was just taking the Advanced written.  AND I PASSED!!!!!!.....I was so astounded that my mind went blank and I failed the Advanced written test!   But, the next month I had studied and passed both the Advanced and Extra Class written.  Since my code test was good for a year, I was now an Extra Class ham!!  I was in the ball park to get a significant callsign, WT5X, which to a West Texan, is pretty neat.  There's only one better and that's W5TX!!  However, it was not to be.  There were about 45 license applications processed at the same time and I wound up as WU5R.  Still OK, since it was my own, earned Extra Class call.  What was really neat was I lived right up the street from WU5S, Willie!!

I've played in just about every sandbox in ham radio, but haven't been as active in recent years.  My kids take an interest every now and then, and I get on the air for a while.  Then they're off to something else and I drift back to the once-a-month or so style of operating. 

But I still tinker with stuff...I love building electronic stuff, fixing old radios, designing yet another "ultimate" wire antenna.  My dream is to have enough real estate one day to erect a directional rhombic antenna that covers all the HF bands!  Watch out!

Until then, I'll just dream!!

73, Pete/WU5R