Back in July i was a mugging victim. Anyone who has suffered a violent mugging will know how that feels. I’ve been the victim of assaults in the past, but never a mugging before.
I’d been out to the local beer festival, and then onto a real ale pub. It was a good day meeting up with several friends. As i set off home, understandably a little worse for wear, i took a few photos on my trusty Canon G9, black and white nighttime arty type stuff. Then completely out of seemingly nowhere, i got a punch in the face. I just have a vague memory of a figure coming from the side. From the bruising i took a couple of other blows to the head, and a hefty blow to my right shin that removed skin and left a very bad bruise.
I think i probably lost consciousness for a brief time, and my memory afterwards is very poor, except for desperately trying to get the three miles back home. There was a lot of blood, and at one point i remember being on the floor and just wanting to stay there. Somehow i did eventually get home.
When i woke i looked around and saw my G9. The screen was damaged, the lens failed to retract properly, and there was a few bits rattling around inside. I looked at the small camera bad i’d been carrying and found the small camcorder i’d had with me was gone.
I then started checking out my injuries. Severe bruising around my nose explained where much of the blood had come from, and inside my upper lip there was a severe cut that has left considerable scar tissue. I also had bruising to my back, and muscle strains. Looking in the mirror i found a round cut on my back. I realised it was the same size as the lens on the camera. I’d had the camera in my hand shooting from the hip, so i guessed i’d fallen backwards onto it. It would explain why it wasn’t taken.
As the injuries started to heal i realised how much of a loss the G9 was going to be. Much of my photography is about seeing something and capturing it. I’m not one for setting up a studio, or doing a big elaborate photo-shoot somewhere, not that i can’t do them, but i like the spontaneity of just walking around places and seeing what interests me, and it’s a more documentary type thing for me too. As it’s not always easy to carry a full camera bag around, the G9 had become my carry everywhere camera. To suddenly be without it made me realise just how important it had become in my work. This is the side of crime that people don’t really understand unless they’re a victim. Not only do these lowlife’s think it’s ok to physically hurt you, they think it’s ok to just take, or break, what is yours. They are scum!! There is no defense for assaulting anyone in such a way, or for taking property like that. People like that are just pathetic cowards.
I went to the police, but there was nothing on the CCTV in the area to help. We live in the most watched country in the world, but it counts for nothing if the bloody camera isn’t facing the right direction!. The police were decent and understanding, and they have caught muggers recently in the same general area i was attacked. They may or may not be the same ones who attacked me, but at least it’s a few morons removed from the streets
I had a look online to see about replacing the G9, not easy now, and second hand it was about the same price as i’d paid back in March 2008 for it new. The newer G10 and G11 are considerably more expensive, and i really couldn’t afford either of them at the time. The G9 was on house insurance, but with paying the excess, and then premiums going up, it hardly makes it worth it.
Still, i needed some kind of camera, so i started looking around for a more normal compact, and came up with the Canon SX210 IS. Although not as good in some ways as the G9, it doesn’t have RAW files, it’s still a very nice little camera. At 14MP it seems to cope ok, and the zoom is pretty capable at X14, and with image stabilisation it’s more usable than i would have thought. It also has HD video, though unlike the G9 it doesn’t have a time-lapse setting, something i had started making use of. I’m not quite so taken with the noise at higher ISO settings. With the G9 i felt low light shots in B&W at 1600ISO worked really well. Most people seem to dislike the high noise level, but i felt it gave a much grittier feel to the image.
All in all though, the SX210 IS is a good little camera that i have grown to like quite a lot. It’s just a great pity that i had to replace a perfectly good camera because some lowlife scum think it’s ok to go around beating people and stealing/breaking their property!
One of the last photos taken on the G9 as i walked out of town
The last photo taken. I was shooting from the hip trying to get a more dramatic look to the image, and ironically, keep the camera out of sight. It was taken at a very slow shutter speed, but that just helps create a bit of movement.
One of the first photos taken on the new SX210 IS