Not sure who to blame…probably me.

Because I didn’t want to spend a lot of time explaining to TSA what ham radio is, and because we already had a surfeit of carry-on luggage to begin with, I decided to ship my rig and other equipment to a friend in Naples, and then ship it back from the hotel where we ended up later in the week.  To do this, I looked at comparative prices from UPS and FedEx for a box of a particular size, weighing 29 pounds, shipped ground freight.  UPS was going to take 3 days, FedEx 2.  And Fed Ex wanted $10 less for the privilege, even with $1K of insurance.  So I went with FedEx.

There was absolutely no problem on the outbound receiving end; the friend was home and signed for the box.  I got to play radio for several days as noted below.

When we went up to Punta Rassa, I didn’t operate because I had to work two days of the four we were there, but also at least partly because I didn’t want to do something that might set off alarms.  (We have that problem at Belzer sometimes if we put out too much RF on 40 meters — because the alarm wiring in the building wasn’t done right, and there’s a pull station fairly close to our riser going up and out of the basement, and that pull station is always the culprit when we set off the fire alarm.)  So I slipped the Nanuk case holding my gear back into the cardboard box it came in, and created the FedEx shipment on Friday.  Once that was all done, I took the box down to the desk and the hotel put it with their outgoing stuff.  Perfectly normal; I’ve done that before with other things.


I missed the pickup on Friday.  Well, figures, it was well after noon before I took it downstairs.  So it sat there over the weekend, during which time FedEx tracking kept insisting they had no record of the tracking number.  Which is annoying, because most shipping companies will tell you that the shipment has been created but not yet picked up.  I figured that would change on Monday.

It didn’t.

I was just about ready to call the hotel and ask, “WTF, over?”  But I thought I’d give them another day, just in case the package got picked up and somehow didn’t get scanned.

Yesterday morning it finally showed up, with a delivery date of June 30 (tomorrow).  So I’m happy now.

The lesson learned is that I should have held onto the package and dropped it off at a FedEx Ship office on Saturday (there were three of them on the way to the airport) instead of leaving it at the hotel.  But no real harm done, except perhaps to my state of mind 🙂

FWIW, I bought this Nanuk case from DX Engineering and everything I took (except the Buddipole, of course, which went into checked baggage, and the computer, which I tote in my backpack) fit nicely into it.  When it gets home, I’ll take a few pictures and post them.