Saturday, July 25, 2015

A rare (but quite uplifting) experience

So, anyone up for a positive, restore-your-faith-in-Customer Service kind of story? Well good, 'cuz I'm gonna share one. Remember when Team WestEnders was sloshing through the rainforest (just last week...but it feels so distant already....sigh...)? And we came to a thermal pool that was actually warm enough for me to splash around in comfortably, so I stepped right in to enjoy it...completely forgetting that I had clipped my Fitbit to the board shorts I wear as a bathing suit? OOOPS! A couple of notes, here: first of all, I wear this thing during all waking hours (a little obsessive, yeah, but whatever...) so there was absolutely no excuse for me to just blank out on the fact that it was occupying its usual position on my waistband. (I blame the....Tropical Brain Fever....that tends to strike when you've been existing in an extremely damp, humid environment for over 4 hours. Sure, it's totally a can look it up...excuse me while I go add it to Wikipedia...) Secondly, while the official Product Manual touts the Fitbit as being "resistant to sweat and rain"...submerging it in a bath is so NOT covered by the disclaimer.

It only took about 10 seconds for me to recall that I had it on, but by then it was far too late. When I pulled it off and lifted it out of the water, it began strongly buzzing in my hand, in a manner that I can only describe a very agitated and unhappy wasp. There was nothing I could do but dry the exterior, stow it away in our backpack, and resolve to deal with it later. It wasn't until we arrived back at the resort that I had a chance to ask the Great and Powerful Wizard--um, "the Internet" for advice. I found the standard "What Dummies Do When They Douse Their Electronic Devices" article, which of course recommended placing it in rice for 24-hours. Somehow I felt...weird...asking the Concierge or the Kitchen Staff for some "arroz, seco, no-cocinado", so I just left it alone for the moisture to hopefully (magically) evaporate on its own. Then after an appropriate length of time I followed the remainder of the no avail. That sucker was D-E-A-D.

I was bummed, but figured I'd exhausted my options. When I returned home, though, I decided to go ahead and contact the company. I'm sure they've heard this sad tale a million times before--perhaps they've developed an additional Bag of Tricks to revive a drowned Fitbit. So I emailed them, told them honestly what I'd done to hasten the demise of my little friend, and asked for any insight they could provide. It took 5 days, but they replied with "We received your email telling us about your One going for a swim and now refusing to work." Wow...that's pretty personal...someone was paying attention. So far, I'm impressed. The message went on to say that they would like to determine if I was eligible for a replacement under warranty. All I had to do was send them proof of purchase....which I had fortunately saved and filed away. (Yay, me! It's rewarding to know that sometimes anal tendencies really DO pay off!)

I had only bought my current Fitbit in February of this year (I discovered from the packing slip), but it was from a discount, online dealer, not the manufacturer itself. Also, you might have noticed that this"incident"...was 100% MY FAULT. Yep, User Error, all the way. But guess what? They didn't care! Their next correspondence informed me that my new tracker would be on its way no cost to me...including free shipping. Wait...whaaaaat?  They didn't even lecture me, or tell me sternly to be more careful this time, and treat your delicate electronic items with the respect they deserve, because otherwise you're not responsible enough to have nice things, blah blah blah--which by the way I TOTALLY would have accepted as well-deserved. Nope...they're just giving me another one...pleasantly...with no fuss or repercussions. That's right, folks, not only stellar Client Care...but also Stupidity Forgiveness, at its best!

(And yes, I promise that I've learned my lesson: no more taking the Fitbit for a dip!)

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