Of course there are exceptions to every rule. We are about to experience (about a year away) a slow rise in sunspot activity which follows a roughly 11 year cycle) which ends more quickly, but at its peak world wide communications with a minimum of power will be the rule instead of the exception.
I could go into great detail about going after a weak signal and landing a QSL card, or making it through a pileup for a confirmed contact, or a sked (scheduled contact) with a cousin in California, a childhood chum in Chicago, or a brother in South Carolina.
If this is a pretty much new to you, and you don't have a GOOD 1 to 30 Mhz receiver (with filters etc.,) talk one of your friends in BARS into letting you go over to their HAM shack, not once but several times and experience this as an observer. You might want to upgrade and make it a participation sport for yourself.