You know? I think that you have put your finger on the solution.
Years ago I bought a wonderful Voigtlander Vito B for ten bucks at a garage sale. Great optics, finely machined metal body and definately pocketable. It served me for years of rugged service in conditions that I didn't want to bring my expensive SLRs and I often lent it to friends and relatives who took it all over the world.

What do you think you'd get if you walked into a camera store today with Ten dollars in your pocket?