Clumsy fool that I am!
So that was the end of my opshop photos, but it didn't spoil our day - we still had fun! On the way home I stopped at Dick Smith's in Eltham to ask their advice, and the shop assistant who served me was able to explain what was wrong with the camera. He said the stabiliser is a tiny sensor that keeps the photo steady if your hands are unsteady, and if it is broken, it can't be fixed. When Ken got home, I told him the camera didn't work any more. I didn't tell him I dropped it. Well, I didn't lie! I just didn't mention it...(smacks self for being dishonest). Ken was annoyed, because it was his camera originally, and he gave it to me when he bought his I-phone and was able to take photos with that.
Next day, we went to Ted's Camera Store over at Greensborough, and the salesman there said pretty much the same thing as Dick Smith's man - although he said he could send it away to be looked at, which would cost $60, and if it could be fixed, it would cost another $100. But why do that when I could get a new camera for $100, which would be much superior to the old one, which is now about 6 years old. I asked if it was common for digital cameras to break down like that and he said "Yes, but has it been dropped?" I looked wide-eyed and said "Probably", and Ken said "Not by me!" and glared at me! Oops.
The upshot of all this was us buying TWO cameras - a nice little Pentax for me for $99, and a slightly better one for Ken - a Nikon, for nearly $300. He justified his purchase by saying that although the Iphone is handy to take photos on the run, they aren't as good as he would like. Many years ago, we both had good SLR cameras and Ken took excellent photos, so he's missing that now, and decided to get something worthwhile to photograph his aviary birds and birds in the wild, which can't be done as well with a phone camera. He said he may as well spend the money while he is still working, and as I said to his Mum today when I was visiting her, the way he(we?) spend money, he'll be working until the day he drops off his perch...