This was the first time I ever got to take advantage of my frequent flyer miles. The programs the airlines offer really do work and I received this flight absolutely free!
I planned to operate the IARU contest from the home of my friend Leonce, FM5DN. This saved having to bring down a lot of equipment. However, I brought along my Kenwood TS-940 anyway.
I stayed at the Hotel la Bateliere. It was a fine hotel but a bit on the expensive side. It would have been too fancy to set up a ham station, so it’s a good thing I was not planning to.
They were obviously suffering from the same bad economic climate as the rest of the Caribbean. Out of approximately 100 rooms, I’ll bet no more than 20 were rented. You didn’t have to worry about overcrowding at the pool or the beach. Oh, about the beach . . . it was topless . . . I was speechless!
Hotel La Bateliere
Ocean Cove. This is a small beach at the hotel where many fine looking YL’s considered their bikini tops unnecessary.
Seated at his home station that he was very kind enough to let me operate for the contest.
This is the store owned and operated by Michel, FM5CD. It is in the heart of the city.
Inside the store
Michel and his displays
FM5CD Home ham radio station.
Book Reading.Here Michel and his daughter, Virginia, are reading my 2nd Edition of “DXpeditions with WJ2O”.
Martinique’s Largest Industry. Making rum here at the J.M. Rhum Company.
I don’t know what it does but very impressive.
Dave, WJ2O, trying to blend with all the finished barrels of rum.
First Stop, The ATM
In most all countries I have visited, the ATM machine always has a lot of activity around it. Martinique is no different.
Boast and traps
Denis, FM5GU. By chance we caught him at home. He is often heard in many contests.
Leonce, FM5DN with cannon.
An ocean view.
Power Station. The only one on the island.
Victor, FM5DP. He is located in Schoelcher.
Laurent, FM5BH. He is a school teacher and very active on 160m. He is a regular contester and the manager of the local contest call TO5T.
Laurent and Leonce are preparing a feast.
Inside the terminal
FM/WJ2O QSL Card Front
FM/WJ2O QSL Card Back
At the bottom is a letter from the Minister of Telecommunications in France. It basically says that licensed radio hams from the US have a reciprocal agreement and are allowed to operate in France or any one of its territories for no charge and without notifying them provided your visit is not longer than 3 months. France’s territories consist of FG, FH, FM, FP, FR and TK.
Kenwood TS-940 Transceiver
486-DX Laptop Computer
Heathkit Micromatic Keyer
Cushcraft A4S Yagi
40 Meter Dipole
The customs in this country was simply a walk by. But, I wasn’t carrying my usual grouping of bulky travel cases nor my ski bag for the antenna on this trip, so I probably looked like a “regular” tourist.