A lot of people scour thrift stores in search of unique treasures. Some are monetarily valuable, while others are personally valuable due to personal taste/style/needs.
I had been wanting a small, pocket-able 35mm camera that I can carry around with me when it's inconvenient to bring my digital system, or my much larger 6x7 camera.
I recently found a perfect camera at one of the first shops I tried. I'm not usually one of the people who spends time searching...so I guess I had some beginners luck.
I asked the employee being the counter what he had the fit what i wanted. The first camera looked ok, but the film advance lever was broken. $10 for a camera that didn't fully work? no thanks.
He then pulled out a little silver and black camera that he said was made in germany, and had a nice weight and feel to it. A leica CM. I didn't know much about this specific camera, but I certainly know Leica's reputation. Everything looked perfect on it...except that the battery was just dead, so there was no way to test it.
I immediately said that I would take it, as if i didn't get it right then he would raise the price or something. So, I paid the $8.99, bought a battery and roll of film at the camera shop down the street, loaded it up, and looked into the lens and fired the shutter to make sure it worked, and I had the perfect camera I was looking for.
I will post a gallery of california photos very very soon, including some of the first roll of film I shot with this camera.