Most of us these days are very busy. Especially for those who are working, raising kids and trying to do the best we can to meet our obligations, there doesn't seem to be enough hours in the day. Today's world is fast moving, with smart phones, iPads and other forms of technology it's hard to have any spare time. And so for many that translates to our beloved hobby, Amateur Radio, we just rush through our routine, work the station, 599, and get back to the hustle and bustle of life.
We use the spotting networks to save time turning the dial looking for DX, or that needed whatever, we may be chasing. Even the rare times that we may call CQ, it's a quick report and on to the next one. Because of our rush to get through our days, we miss a lot of the hidden treasures available to us in Amateur Radio if just take the time.
I'm as guilty as the next guy of all of the above, that's why I can write about it so easily. However in the last few months I've been taking the time to have real chats or "ragchews" with my fellow amateurs. CW is my preferred mode, and so I have set aside 20 -30 minutes in an evening, rather than watch some TV show I will forget about in a weeks' time, to just sit down and have a chat. I've met some really cool people and had many very satisfying QSO's. I have re-sharpened my CW skills and met some new friends.
So, call CQ instead of watching the spots and see what you get. Talk about your rig, the weather, your paddle or bug and enjoy a relaxing time in your shack. You will feel refreshed to meet others who share this great hobby.