IMG_0092I’d love to say that this post was about the Liam Neeson action-pic…alas it isn’t. It’s about Monday 21st January, 2013.

The camera that I’ve used to capture Isabelle from day one in the delivery room, the camera that supplied most of the images on this very blog has been swiped, nicked, nabbed. It is no more…and neither are most of the images from over Christmas and New Year, or some of them going as far back as our holiday to Cornwall.

Gutted doesn’t cover it. Angry, don’t get me started. I’m royally pissed off, especially with myself. If only I’d downloaded all of the pictures, if only I’d not taken the camera into work that day and then taken it out to lunch. I still don’t know if it was taken from my coat pocket or if I left it next to me on the seat…the only thing I know for sure is that when I realised it was 20 minutes later and the camera had gone…and more importantly so had its photo and video memories.

Of course none of this stopped anyone handing the rather battered (but loved) camera back or its contents, neither of which are of any use to anyone.

McDonalds, which is where the events unfolded, kindly checked the bins and CCTV (apparently that area wasn’t covered) to no avail. I’ve scouted the pawn shops and Cash Convertors of this world, even checking eBay. That evening I could even be found shining the torch on my phone in bins in the high street. Loon.

IMG_0087Being a Press Officer I even knocked out a media release and plea to the local papers and journalists I work with on a daily basis. Naturally I know how to craft a human interest story but I’m pleased to say it got picked up and was run by the three papers (The Southend Echo, Yellow Advertiser and Essex Enquirer) that I sent it to…alas to no avail to date.

It did rather restore my faith in humanity somewhat, as did friend and work colleague Alex who helped me hunt high and low as if we were trying to track Dr Richard Kimble. It was just nice that people saw my plight, were engaged by it and genuinely tried to help by getting the story out there. I’d pretty much painted the majority of the population of Southend High Street as shitbags but that really helped restore my faith in humans and human kindness a little.

I still feel that I have let Sarah down and especially Isabelle, a four month gap of memories that can’t be replaced. Of course there are plenty of new memories still to have, capture and cherish but I know two things, this episode will haunt me for a long time (sounds melodramatic I know) and I’ll be clearing the new camera of images and backing them up on a uber-regular basis. I suggest you do the same. I feel like I’ve swallowed enough bitter pills to OD with all the flashes remembering what was on the camera (winces for effect).

As I mentioned in passing we did get a new camera, we went for a slight upgrade wanting to salvage something positive from this. I had thought the camera would be covered by Curry’s ‘Whatever Happens’ scheme. Um, no. Hogwash title and I swear I was misold as I never buy such things…almost whatever happens then as theft or loss is not covered. Come to think of it they don’t sell currys either so they can’t get that part right either.

They were of course eager to sell me another camera but they weren’t exactly the most helpful of sales folk as they seemed to only want to sell me two cameras that I wasn’t really interested in. Tough tits to Currys then and hello online. Not that it was about replacing the camera, it was all about the irreplacable card of memories.

In the end I ordered another Canon powershot, this time in red rather than the back of the old one. Well…I say red, when it came through it was fuschia pink. Sod it, I wore pink at my wedding, can carry off a pink shirt who is going to want to snaffle a pink camera? Exactly.

The photo taking has resumed and there are a few items I did take off for blog entries that are pending (not as many as I would have liked) and have filled in some gaps from images taken from Sarah’s iPhone. Of course it isn’t the same but it’s a start. I won’t let the thieving shitbag(s) win.

And, no, the irony of me taking pictures of the newspaper stories about the loss of the old camera with my new one aren’t lost on me in the slightest.

As I said at the beginning I’d have loved to say that this post was about the Liam Neeson film, Taken, it still isn’t but to paraphrase the most famous line of dialogue from that film, I don’t know who took my camera but if I do find them…I will kill them.

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