The problem with lack of activity is due to a number of factors, Including cellphones, The internet taking away interest from ham radio in general, But one of the main things is that back in the 1970's there were very few repeaters in each area. We would have 50 people operating on a single repeater, For lots of activity, And everyone having fun.
Nowadays we have LOTS more repeaters, So have 50 repeaters with one person monitoring each...... And not many people having fun.
I am afraid you have really limited yourself by getting a VHF only hand held. In most areas of the country, UHF repeaters now have lots more activity, Especially the ones that support Echolink.
If you like Yaesu, Swap off your single band radio for a dual band, (Which will also work very well to monitor (Just like any "scanner") police, Fire, Ambulance, Marine, etc etc) Plus operate the ham UHF band.
The Yaesu FT-60 seems to be a nice choice, Yaesu VX 7 is a radio that has more features, And for a little micro shirt pocket radio, The Yaesu VX 3 is really a nice little low cost radio.http://www.hamcity.com/LongDescription.aspx?UID=327
FT 60 now selling for 170 some bucks at a few dealers.