Hey, there's nothing wrong with a Spotmatic, I've got one of them too (well technically it's my Mum's, it just happens to be at my house).
She bought it in 1967 on a trip to Japan, not knowing anything much about cameras except that that's what the salesman recommended. She got it with a Takumar 55/1.8, 35/3.5 and 135/3.5. For years everyone kept telling her, "your photos just always look so good" and she didn't know what to say, only in the last few years I've been researching gear and realised how highly-rated Takumars really were.
How's the Retina? I've got a few lenses for them, some are the SLR/Rangefinder interchangeable versions I can mount on my m42/ef via adapter (28, 35, 50, 135). But some are the weird ones that the rear-three elements stay on the camera (80mm and one other i can't remember), and I don't have the camera to mount them on (because i bought them cheap off fleabay without doing proper research). I should buy a camera or 3 to go with them one day (ps, I have a GAS problem)...
I love the little retina, it's the folding model before the interchangeable lenses, and has the 50/2 Schneider. Focus spot is nowhere near as bad as they get some rap for online, and the camera is seldom more than arms length away from me.
Glad to hear some spotmatic love, too, thanks, I've got the same 55 and have been tempted to build up a kit.
Spotmatics are very good handlers. Bright microprism screen. Simple controls. Good meter (hopefully).
I know how you feel. I took some pictures of a Lancaster bomber doing a low flypast last weekend.
I think I must have got someone else's film because the pictures are terrible.
I was really pleased at the time I pressed the shutter and thought I had some good ones.
Perhaps that's why I normally shoot non moving subjects!
I was having exactly the same problem till I realised I wasn't looking through my viewfinder straight. I also wear glasses so I'm not sure if it is related to that but now I take my time to make sure I'm looking properly and my photos are turning out a loy more like I invisioned them.
“Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst" - H.C-B.