In 1993, I was very lucky to have an opportunity to study in the USA. I was chosen one of the participants in the Japanese Ministry of Education Six-Month Overseas Study Program in the USA. It was a kind of training seminar for junior high school and senior high school English teachers. The program consisted of two stages. One was to attend an ESL course at Gonzaga University in Spokane, WA. for about two months with home-stay. The other was to take a special course designed for us to study English teaching methodology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, which lasted for about four months. I stayed at a dormitory in Madison.
To my surprise, my host father in Spokane was a ham whose callsign was KK7F. So everything with regard to US license worked out a lot more smoothly than I had expected before leaving Japan. I took two VEC exams (both W5YI's and ARRL's) and reached to Amateur Extra at the end of my stay in Spokane. I would like to thank KK7F, AA7RT and other ham friends there very much again. The first callsign for my US license was KB7YIU(General Class), with which I talked to only a few stations because it came to me after moving to Madison.
In Madison, I joined the Badger Amateur Radio Society(radio club of UW-Madison), whose callsign was W9YT. TS-830S with 1KW linear amplifier and 5-ele yagi beam on the top of the engineering department building enabled me to reach anywhere in the world on the air. Of course, I made a point of talking with Japanese stations after school in the afternoon. I was quite excited at first to find 21MHz band filled with a lot of strong signals from zone 8 or zone 9. Those signals reminded me that I was in the Middle West not in Asia. I miss signals from the Caribbean Seas now.
A couple of shots of W9YT:
In the middle of my stay in Madison, I finally got the callsign, AA7ZP. It is a little long but I like it very much. Though there are a bunch of vanity callsigns available now, I will keep this one as long as possible, hopefully. Anyway, I would like to make a trip somewhere before AA7ZP rusts away. Please call me if you hear me using AA7ZP as well.
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