My daughter's pictures were taken in mid-September. In mid-October, she came home from school with a picture envelope that contained exactly zero pictures. In place of an explanation or apology was a small sticker that read "Due to a malfunction, it will be necessary to retake your package."
The next day, I called the photo studio and spoke with a very nice woman with a smoker's cough named Pam who told me that due to a "digital mishap," my daughter's picture was accidentally deleted from the photographer's camera.
Frankly, this news came as a relief. I had seen some of my daughter's classmates' pictures and I had decided that I could do without a portrait of my daughter holding a plastic apple and leaning against a fake bookcase filled with fake books.
Pam's offer to retake my daughter's picture at the photo studio was a nice gesture, but not a viable option. The studio was several miles away and Cameron was in the NICU at the time. After explaining my situation, Pam did the right thing and offered me a full refund, which she said she would put in the mail that very afternoon.
Day 7: Pam was very glad that I called back to check on the status of things because she had misplaced my mailing address and didn't know where to send the check, which was sitting on her desk right in front of her in an envelope ready to go. Now that she had the information that she needed, she would be able to send the check right out.
Day 14: No check. Pam apologized profusely for the delay, but things were crazy busy at her photo studio and she forgot to mail the check. She was super duper grateful for my reminder phone call and told me that she would drop the check in the mail the next morning.
Day 21: Still no check. Pam swore on her ex-husband's grave that she would mail the check that day.
Day 23: Pam was out of the office, presumably mailing the check.
Day 25: Pam got a nice but firm voice message from me telling her that I expected the check by Day 27 or else I would feel justified taking my complaints to the school principal and PTA President.
Day 26: Pam called and told me that she mailed the check on Day 22.
Day 30: Pam received a phone call from me informing her of the bad news that the check that she mailed 8 days ago (and had to travel 5 miles) had yet to reach its destination. Pam informed me that it wasn't her fault that 1) the post office isn't delivering my mail 2) that I am impatient. She also wanted me to know that she is a very busy woman and doesn't have time to sit around and write checks all day. When I asked her how it is that she had time to cash my check but not write me one, we experienced a connection problem and the call was mysteriously dropped.
Day 31 (Yesterday): No check. I'm sure it will arrive today though. Tomorrow at the latest.