Needless to say, that deflated my ego some, but Bill was careful not to burst my balloon. I learned that it wasn't how fast you could send code, but how well. The general idea was to communicate (not confuse someone). The crispness and consistency of the dits and the dahs... the letter and word SPACING. I soon learned that if you were 'easy' to copy... then people would want to talk to you. It then became enjoyable. From that point on, I never even thought about speed. Bill really made me work hard on the quality of my fist. He told me that if a 1x2 Ham called me that was a real complement to my fist.
I remember Ted Ryan, WB6JXY (sk) saying that the bond I would make with other hams during my Novice days would create many lasting memories. He was right. I think my favorite times were round table CW QSO sked's in the middle of the night. I'm glad I worked my self up through the ranks... starting at Novice. Too bad it's not there anymore. People don't know what they are missing.