I’ve never understood how people could misplace memory cards and camera accessories. When someone says, “oh, I have pictures in my camera but I left the cord for transferring them to the computer at [someone’s] house,” I just don’t get how they can be so flippant about it. I always keep the camera and all of its pieces/accessories together or in designated places, so I can find them at a moment’s notice.
Pictures have always been very important to me. Without them there is no memory of the past…or at least the pictures remind us that there were good times in addition to the bad, which, unfortunately, tend to be easier to remember. Back in the days of film, I was very strict about proper photo-handling procedures…just ever so lightly touching the edge of pictures. I considered it a personal affront if someone looking at my pictures had the audacity to actually put a thumb or finger right on the picture…oh, the horror! I learned to ensure pictures were in albums before allowing anyone to look at them. With digital, I no longer need to be so diligent. A fingerprint on a photo? No problem, just print another one.
We recently suffered a tragedy at our house. The main computer’s hard drive crashed. My husband, an IT professional who has a strict household computer maintenance routine and backup schedule, had not done backups in nearly 4 months. In essence, we had a virtual fire on our hands. There were approximately 2,000 pictures gone in an instant…family vacation at Disney World, the girls with their great-grandparents, the baby’s first birthday…all gone.
Fortunately, we were able to recover them. Some have damage, but I think it gives them character and adds to the story of our life…a reminder of the crash, something which cannot be photographed itself. I’m thinking of putting together a flickr set, but I haven’t yet gone through all of them to fully assess the damage.
We are now being extra vigilant with our backup procedures. In the past, I transferred pictures from the camera to the computer, looked through them all to be sure they all transferred, and then emptied the card. Now, I wait to empty the card until the photo files have been backed up to the backup computer. Sounds like a good plan, no? A good plan until the extra memory card goes missing. I transferred pictures a few days ago. I remember the memory card sitting in its case to the left of the keyboard…there was something next to it that also did not belong in the office. I picked them both up. I put the memory card somewhere out of reach of little hands because it was time for baths and bed and I didn’t want to delay things by going downstairs to put it in the camera bag. It was just a temporary thing.
There’s no real loss. The pictures are safe. It’s just an inconvenience. I just have to keep telling myself that it will turn up.