A Time to Reminisce
(Christmas, 1997)

L. B. Cebik, W4RNL (SK)

When I was very young and could tell a flea from a gnat with my bare eyes, they gave me radio components that I could hold in my hands and from which I could build a super-regenerative 10-meter receiver and squeeze out a little 10-meter power by adding another multiplier after the crystal oscillator.

The next time I looked, I could barely distinguish without glasses a mole from a vole from a mouse, and they gave me transistors to hold with my needle-nose pliers when soldering and reminded me that I still needed to neutralize my 10-meter finals.

Now that I can just barely tell a horse from a camel even wearing my glasses, they give me parts to hold with tweezers while plugging them into circuit board holes smaller than human hairs and offer me complete 10-meter rigs that fit in my hand.

I do not know which I miss more: those big warm parts or those good eyes. Thank goodness 10-meter operators have not changed much over the years-- still the best part and heart of hamming. And if they happen to be running CW QRP from a hilltop, then my heart runs warm, even if the parts run cool.

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