The swap was o.k. but nothing that really rock your socks and the prices were surprisingly "retail". You know the drill: some desert hermit has an Icom 7000 that's covered in dust and soaked in tobacco juice and he wants $2.75 under full HRO prices. Although, that said, Dick scored a really, pristine Heathkit HR-1680 receiver for $60 -- after I goaded him into making the guy an offer. We had a running dialog about "where am I going to put it?" and "where are you going to put it?" and "you know that if you don't buy it, the fact that you passed on it will eat away on you til you are on your death bed". (I really get morbid at times but that set the hook. Dick bought the receiver and he says it works great!)
We had a real vicarious adventure checking in at our hotel, the Quality Inn. Seems there was a line at the front desk around 1730 and all kinds of hell was brewing. The poor girl who had evening manager duties was hung out to dry by the hotel's local management. When a couple of folks complained about their rooms (small things like, oh, the plumbing did not work, no towels, lights broken, no TV, etc.), she told them that SHE COULD NOT SWAP THEIR ROOMS because she did not have the authority. Yessir, it was a real case study in mismanagement.
Dunno what the deal was, but I seemed to be pretty beatific about the whole thing. And, in the end, when Dick and I got our room, we made a full-on military inspection of the facilities: toilet, towels, TV, and running water. Fortunately all checked out except for the TV which was unplugged. Easily remedied although the TV was not used.
The surprise of the evening was when we searched for a restaurant with no crowds. Since the ARRL convention was in town, all the visitors flocked to the "more exotic" dining places and the waits were incompatible with Dick's and my dietetic patience. Exercising what we initially thought as an act of desperation, we traipsed into a Pizza Hut expecting to be greeted by a fast-food, TV blaring, serve-yourself shit hole. Instead, it was a really nice sit-down diner with very friendly waitresses, an expanded menu, and draft Bock beer! Two pitchers of that and two medium pizzas and two hours later, we were excruciatingly contented and sauntered off to our hotel to sleep it off.
But, I gotta tell you this, I am still impressed by the layout and motif change. It was clean, bright, and two old farts could engage in a pleasant evening's conversation without jackhammer disco or rap or servers with tattoos and pierced appendages. Hope to God that it's not only in Yuma because that's an awfully long drive to get an anchovy, black olive, mushroom pan crust pizza.
The weather at Yuma was pleasant, sunny, and mild. But then again, this was not the Summer.
Also seen were a many folks from the SoCal area: the TRW vendors and so on. We also had a pleasant visit from Jim Duffey, KK6MC, a.k.a., "Dr Megacycle" who chewed the fat and swapped the latest gossip in the world of QRP.
But, the most surprising of all as my bumping into an old friend from back in the early 80s, Frosty Oden, formerly N6ENV now NQ1S (Not Quite 1 Second), who had retired from CBS three years ago and moved his family and Motorola business to Phoenix. (Basically, Frosty said he got tired of California and the politics and preferred the friendly people of Arizona. Heat? well, there's always air conditioning, he told me.) How did I meet Frosty? Well, he and his wife were one of the couples who complained about the conditions at the Quality Inn.
It sure is a small world..
..but I would not want to paint it.
Enjoy the pictures.
|Open for business on Friday afternoon|
|This guy was selling his first RB floats for $4.50 (mug included) and subsequent fill-ups for $1.00 each. Tempting, but..|
|Tailgaters; motor home camping AND selling.|
|The hard-top area; prime real estate for selling and camping.|
|Left side of the pavilion for tailgaters.|
|Right side of the pavilion was occupied by this asshole from England. Annoying guy with over-priced junk.|
|The English asshole from a safe distance.|
|More RV camping.|
|Left side of the pavilion close up. Nice seller; still junk.|
|Just a small sample of the nearby Yuma MCAS activity on Friday afternoon|
|Nice seller; no junk; great prices. The Tek 7704 and HP signal generator came back to SoCal.|
|Interesting boat anchors; unattractive prices.|
|Ibidem. Close up.|
|One of the truly nice (and smart) QRP luminaries. Jim Duffey, KK6MC, a.k.a. "Doc Megacycle".|
|Dick and Doc (KK6MC) chat the afternoon away.|