... I used to go in there just to stare stare at cameras, learned a bit, had chats with this one guy who became my 'go to guy' etc... As you all probably know shops can be be very social places, gathering points for a community - I get the feeling like they'd say "doesn't sound like much of business to me!" "we're not here to socialize!" or similar - my point being that occasionally instead of just a chat I'd spot something and buy it - two rare russian 16mm tank processors come to mind ...

I now drive past it without even looking at the building, its just too much of a investment in time and eye rolling ("it's time to join the real world":o). I'd much prefer to go and have a chat with the guys at Progear in Newmarket, whilst realistic about expectations of the digi/analog professionals they are not only respectful but also passionate or at least interested in older gear and processes ... Hours! I've spent hours in there noodling though piles of gear in the back rooms, they've just left me to it. And yes, I do buy things.

Anyhoos, sometimes I think that maybe I just had a couple of bad experiences in Auckland Camera and it's tainted my expectation so in following visits the interaction were bound to go badly, maybe I was looking for excuses to avoid a mutual unhappiness about the state of analog photography and put blame where it wasn't due... I wonder if in not going there anymore I'm a part of the "oh no one shoots film anymore" attitude ? If I don't go in anymore how do they know I'm still out here ?

Do they know APUG exists ?

Ha ha - bet I sound like a real sad sack - nothing further from the truth