I seldom remember my dreams. They fade as I wake, if I recall them at all. Today I awoke remembering the dream that just ended, and it starred my old CB radio.
I own a Cobra CAM 88 Citizen’s Band radio. It’s a 23 channel, tube type AM transceiver, and I have a Silver Eagle D-104 power mic connected to it. I bought the radio used in the mid-to-late 1970’s from my buddy Marc Cooper, who I believe got it from his uncle. It’s probably a mid-60’s radio.
In my dream, I was showing the radio to a friend, and hooked it up to try it out. Now, I haven’t even turned on a CB radio in probably ten years or more, let alone keyed one up and talked. But I did in this dream, and heard distant stations coming in by skip. (skip is when a radio signal bounces off the ionosphere and travels much farther than normal. When sunspot activity is high, you can hear stations from the east coast easier than you can hear locals. High power amplifiers add to the noise factor!)
The odd thing about this dream is that I was using my HAM radio license (KC6YRU) to talk on the air, rather than my old CB radio license (KCQ 0821 (or was it 0827?)). I said something on the air and someone replied, asking where I was. When I replied “California”, we both stopped talking to each other because CB regulations limit conversations to within 150 miles. At 5 watts of power and antenna height restrictions, CB was designed to be short range. Putting it in the 27 megahertz band (11 meters) was not a good idea, and “shooting skip” is as fun there as it is in the 10 meter HAM band. In my old CB days, I would have chatted with the other station for as long as the skip conditions held up. Today, I don’t even have a HAM radio that will operate in the shortwave bands that allow cross-country and world-wide contacts. (at first it was the morse code requirement of the license that kept me away, but since I’ve had occasion to listen to some of the HF bands, and most of them seem to be nothing more than grumpy old men bitching about every little thing, or endless contests, where there is no conversation, just an exchange of contact information to confirm. Boring.)
Now I may have to hook the radio back up and see what’s happening on the air. Anyone know the local CB channel for Visalia?