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What does Patepluma mean?

I've been asked more than a few times about just where I got the name of this website. If you've read the articles under the Honduras Menu, you'll know that I lived in that country for about three years in the early 1980s and that for two of those years I was in the town of Santa Barbara.

According to Honduran legend, when the first small group of Spanish conquistadores arrived in the vicinity of present day Santa Barbara, they met up with a much larger group of heavily armed Indians. The Spanish explorers knew exactly what to do in such a situation - they turned around and ran away as fast as they could. In fact, they ran so fast that they grew feathers on their feet and flew. At least, that's what the legend says. Because of this legend, residents of the Santa Barbara area are known throughout Central America as Pateplumas. The word comes from old Spanish and literally means "feather feet."

When I first set up my website in late 1995 (early history on the web), I wanted a more unique name than "Don's Web Site" or the like. As an adopted Patepluma, I decided to honor my Honduran hometown (as I think of Santa Barbara) and name the website Patepluma. The name seemed appropriate since it had a Latin American connection and was of personal significance.

I've since realized that I was ahead of my time in a way. Patepluma is a perfect word for doing web searches for my site and sites with links to it. If you do a search for "patepluma", about 99 percent of the hits will be either to pages on my site or to pages with links to my site. The word just isn't used much on the web, which gives my Patepluma website a very unique identity. The few odd hits that aren't connected to my site are mostly articles in Honduran newsapers on the web that mention Santa Barbara.

So, the word "Patepluma" doesn't have much to do with the radio hobby unless you are on the web. Some months ago I came across a website that gave synonyms for words by associating words that are frequently found together on the same webpages. (I wish I could find the URL of the site.) On a lark, I typed in patepluma. What synonym did it provide for patepluma? Why, "radio" of course!


This website is maintained by Don Moore,
Association of North American Radio Clubs
DXer of the Year for 1995

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