'Tis a term we learnt only a couple of months back but something which we are familiar with.
And so it happened that when the iPad 2 was finally launched here we sort of found ourself arriving at MidValley at 9am to queue up together with NaanBleu.
Now, there are some things in life that we think we should experience at least once before we find ourself unable to do so. Bungee jumping is still someone on that list, we think that we'll only be able to experience such when our wallet is as elastic as the bungee rope.
Queueing up to get a hyped-up item is another. But we do draw the line at queueing up for over a day (we were tempted to start queueing up at 11pm the day before, though, as we were driving past MidValley around the time...) but we don't see how we can actually stay in a non-moving line for over half a day, really. What if you need to answer the call of nature? Will others in the queue be good-natured enough to let you keep your spot? What about meals?
Anyways we opted to try arriving at 9am - thankfully parking was still plentiful and the queue, well, the queue was only halfway around the corridor.
Joining the queue, we realized we made one mistake: while we pretty much reminded ourself to bring along a fan, we ended up leaving it in the car. And central air-conditioning in MidValley doesn't start till after 10am. Thankfully we arrived before NaanBleu so we texted her to bring a fan for us, else we'd be sweating like mad the entire morning.
Before the store opened, staff from Machines were walking down the queue, asking everyone in line how many iPad 2s were they looking to buy (a maximum of two) and for which model and colour. Overall, we think they did this quite well, it was well organized. They had cards corresponding to the number of iPads of each model and colour, so once they'd run out of cards for a particular type it meant that said type was sold out.
Well we admit throughout the entire time we were queueing and before the fellows from Machines got to us, we were still in two minds as to whether we wanted to get an iPad 2 or not. We could pretty much justify our purchase one way or another (the Chief had, in a moment of exasperation after trying to disassuade us from getting one during the days prior to the launch, accurately observed, "If you really want it you will find all sorts of reasons to get it.". Mind you, the Chief was probably using reverse psychology but it wouldn't have affected us, we were still undecided about it till launch day...)
Even when it was finally our turn to decide on a model (which was easy: white 16GB wifi-only), during the entire time queueing up till we reached the cashier we were already facing buyer's remorse.
It's interesting. Feeling buyer's remorse when we haven't even paid for the iPad 2 and could have asked anyone else in the line if they were interested in having ours.
But be damned if we would give away the iPad 2 after queueing up for it! So buyer's remorse it was.
The queue progressed fairly slowly, even once when we were at the entrance of Machines. It's a good thing we came with NaanBleu for this, we kept each other company and occasionally chatted with others in the queue, asking others if they were going to get casings as well, or data plans, etc. We even bumped into Caipifruta's Awesomeville Aaron who was there with his dad, the lucky bugger - his dad was getting him a white 64GB (can't recall if it was the 3G or wifi model)!
Once at the entrance they had staff acting as bouncers, slowly letting the line trickle through, and when we got in we realized why...
...there was another queue once inside Machines! By this time it was nearly 1pm and our feet and legs were letting us know that they've been holding our weight for some 4 hours now.
And soon it was all over. We paid up, got the iPad 2 in a big Machines plastic bag, made our way out and started window shopping for casings while NaanBleu bought screen protectors and had the staff fix it on for her. We had ours activated within the store, and after that we headed off to McDonalds for brunch and to get off our feet.
Now this, we found the experience to be slightly tiring but it wasn't all that bad. Machines had it pretty well organized, even though with 4 cashiers payment was still terriby slow but we'd say that there weren't any bad moments to the entire experience. Would we do it again? Probably not, haha, but you can never tell so far with Apple and their magical revolutionary marketing.
Now, the Bon Odori, the idea of having to head out to get all sweaty isn't putting smiles on our face (even though it was a fun experience) but the Chief has not been to the Bon Odori before, and, well, it's almost 5 years since our last Bon Odori...