My iPhone tried to take a swim in the Blue Lagoon a week ago. I went there for a relaxing massage on my downtime, but I guess my phone decided to take a dip since I wasn’t. Well, iPhones Can’t Swim so it sunk like a rock into the mud. A stranger asked me to snap their photo, which is what usually happens when someone sees me hauling around professional camera gear. So while trying to snap their photo using their cell phone, and balancing my Nikon camera and cell phone in the other hand, I dropped my phone. It never even hit the board walk. It slipped perfectly between the boards and disappeared. KERPLUNK went my phone and my heart!
I quickly ran to get the pole with a net off the wall on the other side of the water. When I got back I realized there was a metal fence blocking my way in order to keep people out from under the boardwalk. An employee came over and just shook his head. He said that was the 3rd phone lost this week and I should know that “iPhones Can’t Swim.”
A huge thank you to Eric, a colleague, who went to extraordinary lengths to fish it out of the mud under the boardwalk. He wouldn’t give up reaching his hand under pulling out mud a little at a time. He pulled out a phone, and for a second I thought it could be one of the other lost phones. He held it up and the screen was on – it read “Siri Not Available.” Apparently Siri doesn’t like to swim either. I turned off the screen quickly. The restaurant manager, who was viewing this scene through the window, quickly ran over with a ziplock bag of rice.
And yes, I still got that massage, though the therapist kept saying I was tensed up. 🙂 I wonder if it had something to do with a data drowning minutes earlier?! Though sad and disheartening, I didn’t let losing the phone (and subsequently lack of communication), stop me from finishing up the photoshoot. In fact, the company that hired me, never knew I lost my phone since we always communicated via email. For 10 days, my iPhone stayed buried in that bag of rice, starkly sitting on a tiny table in the middle of my hotel room in Iceland. At night, I would use my computer to photoshop that day’s images – AND research data recovery centers.
Upon arriving back in the States today, I sent the phone off to a specialty lab in Denver Colorado that will try to strip the data – mainly the journal entries and photos I’ve taken over the last month from my travels. Sometimes it’s just easier to take pictures with the phone while I am out and about instead of my professional camera – less conspicuous.
I should have really learned by now to back it up! It can easily be backed-up on the plane or in the airport. Lesson learned… again. And be careful around water and hot springs because iPhones Can’t Swim.
20 Nov 2015 Update: (6 months)
I later learned that the rice really doesn’t do much good. A tech guy told me next time to drop it into rubbing alcohol. That would wick away the water and keep the parts from corroding. Also got news today that the iPhone has been restored, though I need to get the new motherboard verified to recover data.
28 Jan 2016 Update: (8 months)
I took the phone to a store near my house, whose name I won’t mention, in order to have the new motherboard validated before I could retrieve the recovered data and use it again…..They sent my phone off WITHOUT a tracking number . . . and, guess what? Yep, the drowned phone and all it’s data spent months being resuscitated, only to be lost in the end. 🙁
“Mistakes are a part of being human. Appreciate your mistakes for what they are: precious life lessons that can only be learned the hard way. Unless it’s a fatal mistake, which, at least, others can learn from.” – Al Franken
iPhones Can’t Swim in the Blue Lagoon by Atlanta Photographer Maryann Davidson Photography
by: Atlanta Photographer Maryann Davidson _ (c) all rights reserved