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Almost a life time of “Paddles and Waves” Once my hobby! Once my trade!


Sono nato nel 1941 a Roma Italia, e dato nome era Fabio Giarri. Ma all’arrivo a 4X-terre, per alcuni motivi complessi, ho ricevuto il nome Daniel Yaari.As Sono cresciuto in luoghi vicino all’acqua, in primo luogo nei pressi del Mar di Galilea, e, successivamente, nei pressi della linea orientale costa del Mediterraneo, è stato ordinato che il mio hobby incluso pale e le onde surf, ma anche un sacco di vele e il nuoto. Nella scuola elementare, e anche durante la scuola superiore, l’apprendimento della fisica e di energia elettrica, non avevo idea che le pale e le onde possono significare cose molto diverse. Intorno al periodo fui chiamato al servizio militare, ho visto un film in cui l’attore Tony Curtis aveva con sé una radio ricetrasmittente, come un marine, su una delle isole del Pacifico. Quella scena suscitato il mio interesse e mi ha portato a passare più tempo messa a punto del “occhio verde” del nostro ricevitore trasmissioni nazionali.Doing so, I encountered the clicks of the Morse code. With growing interest, and investigating the matter, I went to a local radio service shop, where the owner was a ham, and he built me a BFO pitch oscillator with which I was able to read the CW stations that penetrated the broadcast receiver. It was a `love from first date` and, thus, I learned the CW code all by myself.
Being drafted to the army service, I was asked if I have any preference among three or four options before me, and without any hesitation I chose to be a radio operator. During those years (1959-1961), it was mainly CW, and after a six-month course, I graduated as a Radio Operator and after further courses, I became also a cryptologist. I spent my first Radio Career, mostly, in a commando patrol unit, operating all versions of the 19-set (190/191/192…) on a command car with the key strapped to my leg.
After the army service I found a job that called for proficiency in radio operation, but also trained me to qualify for its special requirements in radio-communication. The job was for the Ministry of Communication. In the early 1960s there were not many undersea communications cables and no satellites, so most of the international communication was on HF.
My job was to monitor all point-to-point radio links carrying all modes and all the country traffic to the world. That required a continual change of frequencies, antennas, receivers and transmitters. Where I controlled all those was called a Terminal Station, where I was orchestrating at least three, well-separated receiving antenna fields, transmitting antenna fields and remote-operated transmitters and receivers.
It required understanding HF radio propagation and foreseeing a change before degradation in quality of the mode on use would occur. That job was my second career in radio; it has to do a lot with waves but not with paddles. Being a government job it was poorly paid, but it was a great hobby.
Young and healthy, I was seeking to see the world and make more money, thus my roots in sea water, and interest in radio, directed me to study and acquire a Merchant Marine Radio Officer license. At that time, it was also called “Sparky”, “P.M.G” or “Proficiency in radiotelegraphy”. That ticket put me on various vessels for about nine years, and at least twice circumnavigating the globe. That may be counted as my third career with a lot of paddles and waves. Still, I did not think about ham radio. In the eyes of a healthy man that can row, swim and surf, it looked insane to use your trade as a hobby on your free time.
In 1973 I completed a study of junior electronic engineering, but also was drafted to serve as a radio operator in a tanks unit during the war that year. I came out partly disabled. Still, in a wheel chair, presuming that I would not be able to go back to maritime mobile radio; I started my interest in ham radio. After a surprisingly quick recovery, I started a 30-year career of practical seamanship instructor and a teacher for maritime communication and navigational aids in a nautical school.
In 1976 I was offered a job, of a one way voyage, from Hobart Tasmania to Amsterdam Holland. It was only a three-month voyage, but almost anything that may happen did happen on that vessel. It was a small bulk carrier of a New-Zealand Union company and its name was “Union Trans Tasman,” call sign ZMPT, later changed to 4XYP. That voyage is worth a book on its own, and it was the last voyage that I made as the sole Radio Officer.
During my 30 years as an instructor and teacher I made a lot of voyages but mainly as whale boats and a sailing yacht skipper, or as an instructor with students on merchant marine cargo ships. These were years with a lot, of both types, of paddles and waves.
In 1973 I received a ham license, 4Z4OL, but it was not until 1976 that I bought my first station. Radio Officers were granted an extra class ham license after a temporary one-year second class. Around the late 1980s, all extra classes were allocated a “1” after the 4X prefix, and as I was allowed to choose my own suffix, I quickly found that F and C are the best on my preferred CW Iambic mode, thus, I became 4X1FC.
In 1999, when the Morse code was about to cease being an official mode for international communications, and the Radio Officers were a vanishing people of the seas, I went to a course for acquiring the General Operator Certificate (GOC) for operating the equipment of the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS). I never had the chance to operate, at sea, the full extent of the system. I retired in 2003 and until 2007 worked as an examiner for the written part of yachts masters and all other small vessel licensing categories. Now, at the age of 70 with a cluster of health problems, it is the ham radio and, especially the CW paddles and waves that maintain my sanity…so, see you on the bands.


Giarri Fabio/Yaari Daniel – 4X1FC    –   Silent Key


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