The one where my Kobo took a bath (and I hope I didn’t kill it)

Two things you should know about me: I love to read and I suck with electronics. I have dropped phones in sinks, bathtubs, and bowls of queso. I can’t have anything less than an Otterbox on my phone because I drop it daily. Once, I dropped my phone down a mountainside while taking a picture at Morraine Lake. Another time, I dented my brand new iPhone in the 10 minutes it took to go from the cell phone store to the electronics store to buy a case. (Why didn’t I just buy a case at the cell phone store? Because I don’t know why.) Then there was the time I brought my phone to the Apple Store complaining that it wouldn’t charge or connect correctly any more. It took them two seconds to shine their little flashlight thingy in the port and show that it was completely corroded. Apparently, iPhones are not appropriate chew toys for babies that won’t stay still for diaper changes.

And those are just my notable mishaps. I have cracked more screens than I care to admit and at one point could change an iPhone screen in only a few minutes as I had done it so many times.

Needless to say, if the machines rise up against us they’ll come for me first as punishment for slaughtering their brethren.

So when my husband bought me a Kobo Glo for Christmas a few years ago, I told him to take it back. Not only was I morally opposed to eBooks (what about that new book smell???), but I clearly cannot be trusted with electronics. It was a bitch move, but he knew what he was marrying. Luckily, I’m stubborn but my husband is stubborner, and took it out of the box and set it up before I could protest. (Okay, while I protested.) The only thing he told me not to do is take a bath with it.

Now, it hasn’t been an easy relationship. I like to get books from the library ’cause I could not afford to buy every book my son and I read. You can put library books on a Kobo but it is a freaking pain in the ass. There are applications you have to download, multiple logins to remember… I am technologically challenged and it frustrates the hell out of me. Plus, who has time to sit at the computer?? I mean, I get it. 1) Copyright. 2) People are inherently lazy and buying eBooks in the Kobo store is so so so easy and they need to make money. But I have spent my fair share of time cursing at this thing.

But for all that, it does have it’s advantages.

First of all, I get stuck laying with my son in the dark quite often. Whether he won’t fall asleep or he’s had a nightmare, I’m in the dark awake for a lot of the night. I would waste so much time on the internet, there was a time when I was convinced I had done every Buzzfeed quiz in existence. Every one. I’m pretty sure it’s how I got sucked down the rabbit hole that is Twitter. (Are you following me? You should follow me. I’m not funny but I retweet a lot of people who are.) But with the Kobo, suddenly I could read and I didn’t resent my son’s sleep issues quite as much. (*Quite as much*, I still hate them for both of our sakes.)

Secondly, it’s really convenient for when I want to read, but also want to do something else. Fold laundry, cook dinner, knit… I don’t have to hold pages open and it takes a second to flick to the next page. Because yes, I am one of those people who won’t put a book down and will brush my teeth while reading. The most hypocritical thing I’ve ever said to my son was that you can’t walk and read at the same time. You can. Not safely. But you can. 

So where is this heading? Well, last night I went to take a bath. I was almost done a beheamoth of a book and I was at that point where I couldn’t stop now. You know that point. I told myself to be careful a million times and then I said, psh, you’re almost 30, I think you can handle not dropping something in water lolololol.

So of course I dropped it in water.

I pulled it out of the bath in a second flat, congratulated my reflexes, and dried it off. I sucked the water out of the charging port and the top button (probably gonna die now) and set it on the counter while I got out of the bath.

I saw the battery light start to flash and noticed that I hadn’t set it on the counter. Or maybe I did and it slid. But either way, it was floating in a bowl of water that my travel bottles were soaking in. (Why do I do these things???)

Enter a few choice expletives here.

So now I’m royally screwed. I put it in rice, the usually go to, but it starts flashing again and I can’t help but think rice is not going to do shit in this case. I get on Dr Google and find out that even if the water doesn’t short circuit the device, the lovely relaxing fancy bath salts will corrode the crap out of it. So, with nothing to lose, I then turned on the tap and rinsed my kobo. Like, sent water through the ports. On purpose. Through tears.

I then opened it up.

I should note two things: 1) opening a Kobo is super simple and 2) I could not get my Kobo to turn off so the true miracle of this story is that I’m still alive to tell it.

There was so much water in it! If I would have left it closed, it for certain would have died. I towelled it off, shook it, blew on it, and deposited it back in rice, but just on top of the rice you know?

But then I heard it fizzle! Eeek, ack! No! So I said screw it, I have nothing to lose. And then I sat with my hair dryer, holding down the cool button, for a half hour blow drying it. Water was oozing out from behind little components. I drank alcohol and googled how much a replacement would cost. When I decided way more than I could afford, I blow dried it some more. I need this baby for Europe!

Finally, I decided there was nothing to do but leave it be. Because I’m an idiot, and I didn’t realize this until this morning, I left it to dry on the ledge above the kitchen sink. Idiot. But, against all odds


I powered her down and she’s currently resting after her ordeal. I’ll power her up and try charging her in a day or two once I’m certain she’s bone dry. There’s always the chance the charging port is toast, or that it will die suddenly from corrosion or some other related trauma, but for now, she lives! 

Please keep Kobo in your thoughts. She is really looking forward to her trip.


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