Tankstravels.com most popular post is


Like you, I wish it were the Puerto Vallarta bum crack guy. That was a memorable photo shoot, for sure. Or, the scuba diver who brought her stuffed animals on the dive boat in Cozumel.

Alas, it is this: My horror story with Zooom Electronics. A company that ripped me off. An Amazon.ca (amazon.com) merchant.

I hope the thousands of people who’ve read the posting have taken their business elsewhere.

screen-shot-2016-11-19-at-8-32-42-pmThat’s right. THOUSANDS of hits since the posting appeared in December 2014.

Nearly 100 hits in 2014. 2600 hits in 2015. More than 4400 in 2016 and the year’s not up.

What’s even better? Where the posting sits on the Google search engine. Right below Zooom’s amazon website.


Why post this now? Black Friday and Cyber Monday, that’s why.

Zooom counts on positive reviews because it makes the majority of its money on Cyber Monday. This is what a Zooom guy told me when he was trying to fix their first screw up – selling me an advertised camera they didn’t actually have in stock.

There are some great Black Friday-Cyber Monday deals out there. My hope is that you’ll find your deals anywhere other than Zooom Electronics.

Need an alternative? Try London Drugs. Had a not-so-great experience there turned into a positive earlier this year. So much that I’ve returned to London Drugs several times since to buy more gear for my Olympus mirrorless camera and GoPro. London Drugs has an online store, just like the retailer who ripped me off.

Finally, a postscript on Canon’s involvement in the fiasco. Canon Canada came through with a new housing to replace the one that leaked.

We must punish bad behaviour and promote the good merchants.

I’m launching a new website called SOLTERRIFIC. The first post has the word prophylactic in it. A good start, methinks.


Tank is one pissed off snowflake


This is the bitch who nearly crushed my laptop screen when she reclined her seat hastily in the middle of the flight.

No warning. No slow tilt back.

Nope, just a lot of weight (hers’) thrust in my direction. And, she’s a hefty gal.

If that wasn’t bad enough, she continued to slam the back on her seat throughout the flight.

I knew she was trouble as soon as I took my window seat behind her.

When she called for the flight attendant and demanded headphones BEFORE the flight left the gate.

Who does that?

I hate people who recline. I’ll only recline if someone does it to me. To take back the space taken from me.

In this case, the recline mechanism on my seat was stuck. I couldn’t take back my space. So, I was pinned to my seat. And I’m small.

Another United Airlines-supplied trip through Dante’s rungs of hell.

There’s a lot to hate about travelling. Especially now that rudeness has become normalized.

Props to @londondrugs VP


Very cute and takes great images of the shenanigans on my street. See tanksview.wordpress.com

This isn’t a commercial.

Rather a shout out to (Canadian-owned) London Drugs for resolving a problem I had with my new Olympus OMD camera. Micro four thirds (MFT) and mirrorless. Smaller and lighter than a DSLR. Interchangeable lenses.

Bought for my upcoming trip to the Galapagos. Ground level photos – the descendants of the beasties Darwin saw. (My underwater camera is a Canon G16 point and shoot in a FG-16 Fantasea housing.)

Long story short, Clint Mahlman, COO and senior VP of London Drugs, stepped in personally to ensure my defective camera was replaced in a hurry – like the NEXT DAY.

No shipping it off to a black hole at some Olympus factory for a fix under the warranty. A fix that could take months.

Nope, Mahlman made things happen because I’d owned the camera for only about a month. And, it sat at home for most of that period because I was travelling for work.

I made contact with him after a less than satisfactory experience in the store. No fault of the camera manager, who was only following procedure. A bit too strictly perhaps.


Mahlman followed up with me shortly after the exchange. He could have forgotten about it after that. Only he didn’t. He contacted me a few weeks later to inquire about camera. A camera I love.

That’s excellent customer service from one smart, sincere and PR-focused executive. I won’t forget it next time I need to make a purchase.

In fact, I’ve already purchased an additional lens … at London Drugs.


Don’t fail me now #Rimowa


Okay, so this is scary. I can’t get the combination lock on my suitcase to work. It just won’t open.

My wallet is in there. So is my camera, IPhone, computer.

I’m in Mexico, more than an hour from an airport and a customs officer with a TSA lock key. There are no suitcase places in town.

The only remedy is to have my extremely resourceful Air BnB host sever the lock. She has the proper hardware. Files of some kind. Says she has done this in the past for guests. It takes her less than two minutes to cut the lock.

I’m pissed. Not with her. She’s terrific. I paid $650 for this Rimowa suitcase three years ago. The lock shouldn’t have malfunctioned.


The only thing I can think of is damage done from baggage handling, or the suitcase being opened and fooled around with by security at one of the three airports I travelled through to get to Mexico.

(I opened the lock and suitcase once after I arrived to retrieve my scuba gear and put away my valuables. I noticed the lock was a bit finicky but didn’t think it was an issue.)

I’m freaked. I know there’s a five year warranty. The fix should be covered. Where the hell did I put the receipt? I’m usually very organized with receipts (photo to Evernote and original in a special file folder). Surprisingly, I can’t find it when I return home a few weeks later. (There’s a chance I did the ultimate safekeeping and put it in my safety deposit box at the bank. Didn’t check there).

Go to the MEGO store. Where I purchased the suitcase. They don’t keep records from that far back.img_0884

An email to Rimowa customer service tells me to take it to the local repair place in Vancouver. The serial number will determine whether the suitcase is under warranty.

It’s going to the repair shop this week. I’ll keep you posted.

I’ve got a trip planned for the end of October. Hoping the fix is quick and painless.

UPDATE. Weston Luggage in East Vancouver fixed it while I waited. Covered by warranty. Very happy.