The weather has been absolutely awful here in the UK in the last few months. We have had rain and gales almost non-stop, it really has been miserable. If only I could win the lottery, I think I would almost certainly get myself a holiday home down under.
Anyway, I've had the tower wound all the way down for well over a month which means I've done hardly any radio at all. I think I have put 40 m on a few times but haven't really had to get up and go to really do some serious operating. However, now we have a little bit of settled weather coming along for a few days, I decided to wind the tower up and do some operating on 20 m. I had a really enjoyable time for an hour also this afternoon, there was some really good stations coming along path from the USA, I think I worked more people long path this afternoon than anytime before. I worked a few stations on the West Coast, N0UN in Colorado, VE2YI (a good callsign for an ex-Geordie amateur radio operator why I.... Get it?) I also worked KD6BZN in California. It was also great to hear Frank, ZL1SLO in New Zealand. Apparently Frank gets up in the early hours of the morning to do is operating because he causes interference during the day, so Clive 3B8CW was telling me with his big 59 signal from Mauritius Island in the Indian Sea.
Anyway, the icing on the cake came when I was just about to close down. The band was really getting quiet and hardly any people were returning my call. Then I heard a very weak signal coming back to me. It took a few repeat calls for the operator to make himself understood, but it turned out to be Diya Z81D in South Sudan. Apparently this is the newest callsign added to the DXCC. Anyway, he wasn't a particularly strong signal, probably 4/3 at best, but he gave me a good signal of 5/8 which was nice. I really couldn't hold a proper QSO with him as the conditions would not allow. But it certainly makes a difference for one of these very sought-after stations actually returned my call, rather than be sitting in a huge pile up for hours.
I would just like to say a very big thank you to DIYA for being patient with me, I know that he could hear me quite well, although I was really struggling with him. Maybe next time conditions will allow us to have a longer chat. But that really made my day so thanks to him for taking the time to return my call.