This was my fourth trip to FHN. For the second time I travelled by plane, boat and train, arriving at Zurich airport on Thursday afternoon, taking the Intercity train to Romanshorn and then the ferry across Lake Constance (Bodensee) to the town of Friedrichschafen on the German ( northern) bank of the lake.
Arriving into Friedrichschafen harbour
My travel companions were Graham, G4FSG and John, G4BAO.
We met up with a bunch of the Camb Hams on the ferry for the short crossing.
A drink on the ferry with the Camb Hams
After a great breakfast on Friday morning at the City Krone hotel, where we were staying, it was off to the Messe on the free bus.
Since we had previously bought our tickets on line we were able to join the shortish line to get into Hall1
I had some business to complete ( delivering VLNA preamps) on the Friday morning, so it limited my time to look around until late morning.
Hall 1 houses all the clubs as well as the various traders selling 'new stuff'. Traders like Kuehne Electronic, EISCH Electronic, Schubert Electronic, the Icom, Yaesu and Kenwood stands together with lots of smaller and larger traders selling everything from antennas to SDRs, RC helicopters, QSLS cards and computer wares.
Between Halls A1 and Hall A, where the first of the flea market stands were to be found, was the QSL wall, DARC presentation area, food court and A2 talks rooms.
Part of the QSL wall
I met up with Enrico, IW5BCE, at the QSLS wall at 1pm. this is an annual event when all the EME ops get together to either arrange the evening's meal or just meet and say hello in person. Enrico is the organiser for the EME Friday evening meal event on Lindau Island ( on the lake).
After lunch of Curry Wurst and Pomme Frites, washed down with German beer, it was on to the serious business of looking round the flea market stalls.
I have to admit I didn't buy a lot on the first day ( or the second!)
Being very tired and 'hammed out' we went back to the hotel about 5pm, ready for the evening meal with the Camb Hams at a local Chinese-Indian restaurant. To be honest the quality of service left a lot to be desired and I doubt we will be going back there again.
However, the company of the Camb Hams more than made up for the long serving delay and general quality of the food.
On day two it was a repeat of the trip to the Messe, followed by a good scour of Hall A4 and then back to Hall A3. Undoubtedly the quality of the 'items' in Hall A3 were superior, although this may be my perception as a microwaver.
This was also the day when Chris Duckling, G3SVL, presented his talk on 100 years of the RSGB and its association with other societies. Earlier there had been a talk on IOTA, also arranged by the RSGB.
Chris does his talk in one of the A2 convention rooms.
During the day I met up with a number of amateur radio friends from around the world. One of these was Bruce, PY2BS! Visiting from Brazil with his wife and son. in order to have more time to chat we arranged to meet up on the lakefront in Friedrichschafen and have our evening meal together.
We (Graham, John and I) were joined by Bruce, XYL Darsheema and son Max.
Sitting in the restaurant, looking out across the lake at the falling rain ( yes, it rained on the Saturday....) but enjoying a superb Greek meal with excellent wine made I seem like a different world!
Sunday morning and Graham and I elected to spend another few hours at the Messe whilst John went off the visit the adjacent Zeppelin museum.
A Zeppelin flies over the Messe!
All to soon it was time to head off for the ferry and the train and plane. But not before we had a last Kaffee und Kuchen, sitting by the lakefront. Most enjoyable!
The trip home was uneventful and although we were all tired, we all felt it was worth the expense.
John's friend says goodbye as we approached Romanshorn!
Arriving back in Romanshorn.
In all I didn't buy a great deal ( what do you buy a man who already has everything?)!!!!!!!
I bought some adapters, attenuators and GaAs FETs and of course lots of coffee, ice cream and the various meals and beer.
I was also presented with a nice 23cm feed for my EME dish. I want to thank Carlos and Victor for the very kind thought. I will be testing it soon and promise to report back on my results.
I'll be updating the Friedrichschafen blog as and when I think of anything else to cover.
73 de Sam
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