On Thursday night someone broke in to our house. They took our car, our computers and all my camera equipment. I actually still don't think I quite believe it. It has been the most surreal few days and when it first happened I honestly was just happy that our hard drives were still here and our cat was ok... I didn't care about anything else. But now it's slowly hitting home...
When it happened we were out.. me and Pete had had such an amazing week. On the Monday it had been my Birthday and our first wedding anniversary and on that Thursday we'd had the nicest walk around the park, had some good news about work, got dressed up, went out for a meal and then met up with a bunch of wedding peeps at a pub. I even specifically thought at one point how I felt really happy, the business was going really well and I felt on top of everything..
At the end of the night we got out of the taxi and the first thing Pete said was "Where's the car?".. we stopped for a second wondering whether we'd parked it on another road (parking at our house is a nightmare).. but we both definitely knew that we'd parked it there... we then had a slightly confused few steps.. which then turned in to a run as we began to realise the car keys were in the house. The house looked normal from the outside and when we entered the living room everything looked fine.. until I spotted a drawer to our little sideboard was open. That's when I knew. We both ran through the dining room (where more drawers were open) and that few seconds up to my office was horrendous. The first thing I noticed was the computer gone and then my camera bag.. but the total relief when I saw all my hard drives is indescribable. We had had back ups of everything stored at a parent's house but we were about to move in to an office space so they had been brought back to put in the new office.. so the thought of them all being stolen.. well, we all know that it's actually not even worth thinking about.
We called the police, gave a statement and then the following day was spent calling insurance companies and finding receipts. We now have claims waiting to be authorised so that we can start hopefully replacing things.
I find it actually quite weird how I've reacted to all of this. When it happened I felt oddly calm and just kept saying "No way.." in a kind of surprised way.. I just could not believe that there was a space where the car should be, where my computer was. I even asked the police should I not be reacting more to this.. one then said that we'd probably not sleep that night as someone had been inside our house, been through our stuff etc.. and actually quite a few people have said that that would be the worst feeling, but again, my weird reactions.. I'm totally ok with it. I feel normal in the house, Pete had to go out on Friday night so I was on my own in the house and I felt fine. I actually joked about how the burglars would be having a field day as they have a boot full of photo booth props including wigs and silly hats.. but today we've been going through just how much they've taken and looking at, realistically what will be covered. For our insurance we get compensated for how much the item is worth now (depreciation etc) so it looks like we're going to lose out and it will cost us money.
This is where I struggle. When we started this business we had no money. Nothing. I borrowed the bare minimum and we bought basic equipment (a couple of D90's and some basic lenses) and the first 18 months was incredible work wise but a complete struggle financially. Over the past two and a half years we've worked our ass's off climbing that ladder. Every single purchase felt like such an accomplishment... I remember getting my 5D and just feeling incredible.. even starting with a couple of memory cards to now having about ten still makes me feel so proud. My kit still isn't extravagant.. I use a few lenses and that's it but we were about to maybe invest in a few more lenses, maybe another desktop.. and it felt that in the next few months we were finally going to be able to stretch our wings a bit.. all the hard work was finally paying off... and then this happens. We take one step forward and then once again we have to take two steps back. It really sucks.
BUT...really.. we're ok. No-one was hurt, my cat is safe, the business will carry on as normal and we're going to remain positive about the whole thing. When it happened (again, quite a weird reaction for me) I tweeted it. I'm not usually like that but the response has been overwhelming. We've had so much support and offers 100 times over to lend kit, laptops (I'm actually typing on Rock My Wedding's laptop right now), lifts to places.. everyone has been incredible. I think we all need to remember that although Twitter can get a bit bitchy and annoying sometimes.. when the shit actually hits the fan we're all there for each other 110%.. and that's pretty special.
This is quite a rambling post but if one good thing could come out of this I'd really like it if everyone made an effort to look at their own situation... their security, their back ups, their insurance, record serial numbers and if there's anything that could be slightly better then DO IT. I also want to say a huge thank you for all the kind messages and offers of help.. you really are the best family and have easily made this whole situation so much easier..
I'm not sure if this is going to help at all but a few people have mentioned posting serial numbers of equipment just in case things turn up on places like ebay etc so below is all the information about stuff that was taken. If you could pass it on and make as many people aware of it as possible I would be extremely grateful...
iMac Desktop - Serial no: VM817K99ZE2
Macbook Pro - Serial no: W8016RDXATN
Canon 5D Mark II Body - Serial no: 2031200165
Canon 5D Mark II Body - Serial no: 2831516721
Canon 85mm f1.2 lens - Serial no: 155579
Canon 35mm f1.4 lens - Serial no: 109527
(also has a filter attached that is actually stuck to the lens)
These are a few instagram photos from our lovely night out taken pretty much at the same time they must have been in our house...
Oh my oh my oh my... Sinead and Dan got married and oh my goodness.. this car bootin' photographer was in her thrift lovin' element. It was back in September when we suddenly experienced a mini heatwave and I arrived in Whitstable to find myself in mini heaven... meeting Sinead and her bridesmaids at a gorgeous house 2 mins from the beach.. watching Sinead get in to her beautiful Candy Anthony dress and Irregular choice shoes and making her way down to the gorgeous beach house in a beautiful sky blue camper... it couldn't have been more perfect. Guests were relaxing on the deck with gorgeous vintage babycham glasses (all thrifted by Sinead of course) and a dapper Dan waited for his Bride...The ceremony was perfect.. on the decking in glorious sunshine and as canapes were nibbled I snuck Sinead and Dan off to Whitstable town to say hello to all their vendors (the flower lady and the cheese shop) and to have some piccies...As we travelled to Dan's parents house for the reception Sinead seemed ridiculously excited for me to see the marquee... and OH MY GOD I soon realised exactly why. It was INCREDIBLE. Sinead and her friend had spent months and months car bootin', on ebay, in charity shops and finally it had all come together! The theme was pretty much 'retro seaside' and from the gorgeous deck chair striped walls to the smallest seaside postcard.. everything was styled to perfection.. so much colour and so much fun... I literally could've taken pictures for a week.I absolutely friggin' loved this wedding and I absolutely friggin' love Sinead and Dan.