I had an enjoyable experience on the radio this evening as I caught part of a broadcast from Radio Romania International on 6020 khz ~04:30 UTC. They were reading letters and emails from folks around the world giving reception reports and general comments concerning their love of shortwave radio. I was thrilled to hear these comments of course, but what really intrigued me was the sentiments expressed were almost universal. By this I mean the people writing about their love of radio came from every part of the globe, and from very different backgrounds, but all had the same appreciation for and love of radio.
I heard letters from the U.S., Kenya, India, Japan, England, and many other places with folks expressing how important shortwave radio was for them. So many of the same things we say with regard to the need for radio in a world where the favorite communication infrastructure is fragile at best. Many also expressed the desire to hear news and music from other cultures, as well as the ability to use their imagination in ways just not possible with TV or on the Web.
Perhaps the most striking comment was from someone in Africa who wrote that in his country one rarely heard information about important issues, underscoring the need for shortwave radio so as to learn about what was happening in his own country! What a powerful statement!
As I have written numerous times before, we take our access to information for granted in this country, and in the Western World in general, but for millions of people around the world they simply do not have this kind of access.
A final thought about tonight’s experience is that I felt very connected to these people, and to the world, even if only for a few moments, as I realized there are many kindred spirits out there who value shortwave radio as I do. What a wonderful evening! 73, Robert