So, normally I am a very cheerful person. I smile easily, laugh easily and tend to make other people smile and laugh easily. Today, however, this ability is simply beyond me or at least is has been for the pas two hours or so. Let's start at the beginning though.
While I was on vacation I noticed that I seemed to have a fleck of dust on my camera lens, or so I thought. It first turned up at the airport in Atlanta, so I took out my lens cleaning rag and rubbed away. It seems to go away, so I left it at that. However, it turned up again on the first day of my trip while I was taking sunset pictures out on the golf course with my grandfather. Oh, crap...I realized at that point that the problem was not as simple as a fleck of dust on my lens, this piece of dust was obviously INSIDE my camera! How in the heck did it get in there??? I wondered. My camera is a Canon PowerShot G7, the lens can't be removed or anything!!! That's when another facet of the seriousness of the problem hit me. My lens not being removable meant that the camera would have to be opened in order for the image captor, where this stupid piece of dust now very clearly was, the be cleaned. I already suspected that I would probably have to send my baby off to a Canon Service Center to be cared for, but I wasn't willing to resign myself to that possibility right off the bat. I therefore took my camera to a photography shop in Florida to see what they would tell me, but they wanted to ship it right off the bat without even looking at the problem. My next course of action was to show it to my boyfriend who is also an amateur photographer and knows more about cameras than I ever will (he's an engineer so he likes to know everything he can about how everything works), but he also tended to believe that I would have to ship it off. I knew he wouldn't tell me that unless he was pretty sure that was what was going to happen, so I pretty much resigned myself to the fact that I would have to kiss my camera goodbye for at least a week or two to get it fixed (there's a Canon center right here in Montreal). Then last night I was allowed one last glimmer of hope. There's an awesome photo shop in Montreal called L.L.Lozeau and I went on their website to poke around for a possible Father's Day gift for my dad and for the heck of it clicked on the camera repair button. Boom! image captor cleaning, 35$ for 72 hour service and 45$ for express 24 hour service. Awesome!!! So I left my apartment this morning in a great mood with my camera thinking they would be able to clean it for me, especially since they specialize in Canons, but I was brought back down to earth almost as soon as I gave my camera to the service attendant. He looked at it, saw the piece of dust when he shot a few pictures and said that he regretted to tell me that since my camera needed to be opened up to get at the captor that it would have to be sent off to Canon to be cleaned. Now here's the kicker: Lozeau would ship it off for 45$, it would take three weeks for Canon to diagnose the problem and then another three for them to fix it and it would probably cost somewhere around 120$ for that. I wanted to cry. A total of 165$ just to have a piece of dust taken off an image captor??? How do these people justify that??? I left the shop with my camera, completely disgruntled and discouraged. My next course of action is to take my camera to Canon myself (like heck I'm paying 45$ to have it shipped there, it's a half hour by public transit from my apartment!) and ask them myself how much it would cost. If they say 120$ I'll have to wait until next month to have it done and resign myself to not having a camera to use until then, at least not for daytime shots. A lot of you may be wondering why I don't just Photo Shop the dust out, but the reason is simple: I don't have Photo Shop because I can't afford the outrageous price for that either. I'd have to see if I can do it with the photo editing program that I do have, but I'd really rather just save myself the disappointment of taking pictures and then not being able to touch them up the way I want and having to put up with the horrible little fleck of dust, particularly since the next occasion when I really would need perfect pictures is my boyfriend's graduation next week. I may see if I can borrow my brother's or my father's camera for that, because I don't think I could do without pictures of that day.
So there you have it. Not many things can ruin my naturally cheerful disposition, but horrendously overpriced repair bills for my camera will do it. Who do these people think they are that they can charge over 100$ for cleaning an image captor? It must take all of 10 minutes to open up and clean a camera like mine. 120$...absolutely disgusting.