So last year for my birthday I got a wonderful and totally unmerited gift: a Namiki retractable fountain pen. I wrote about it here. It was something that I coveted for a long time (looking longingly at the display in the pen store, but never actually doing anything illegal or unethical to obtain one), but never hoped to have. (Well, maybe I did hope, a little, but it was kind of a "pie-in-the-sky", "stars-in-your-eyes" sort of hope.)
Lately my wonderful Namiki fountain pen has been doing an annoying thing. I'll be writing along and suddenly the whole thing will pop apart. It's annoying, and it's embarrassing too, say, if you're sitting at a preaching seminar with about 300 people and suddenly the bottom of your pen flies through the air as if it were a mini rocket.
So, I took it to the pen store, seeing if there might be a solution to my problem.
The clerk noticed something that I never had: the pen casing had developed a tiny crack. She did not think it was fixable, and even so, they did not do repairs at this store. But, she said, I could contact the company if I wanted to. She gave me their website.
On Saturday, I sent them an email.
On Monday, I got this piece of news, from a woman named "Melissa", a representative of the company:
"This model Namiki Vanishing Point pen was discontinued in 1999. Unfortunately, there are no remaining pens ore replacements in parts. Please let me know if you wish us to replace your pen with our current model as shown on our website..... in the color of black, blue, red, and green. This is at no charge to you."
I can get a new pen! At no charge!
Of course, there is a catch. I have to send the old one back. They said to make sure to send it back in a way where it can be tracked (I assume to make sure it arrives at its destination.)
Of course, I suppose there is the possibility that they might not send me a new pen, after all. I would need to trust "Melissa's" word in this. And I do love this pen, so I suppose I could just tape it at the crack and keep trying to use it, and apologizing every time it rockets off, and hope that I can find all the parts.
But, I'm thinking: red.