That sound is the sweet upstart of a little Apple laptop beginning its computing life with me. Please join me in welcoming "Pip", a hardy 12.1" G4, to my lap. Reminiscent of a stalwart hobbit, it's small but will get the job done.
I called a couple stores in London seeing what package might be put together to attract my business. (Because if I wanted to pay retail, I'd order online; and I wanted to support a local small business: these were the lines I fed to the sales folks). Understanding that the markup on Macs is so low that dealers cannot negotiate prices, I held out for throw-ins or add-ons.
Following Urs's advice regarding negotiating consumer relations ("know what you want") I managed to convince Randy to give me a wireless, Bluetooth Mac Mouse instead of the 50%-off an iBook protective sleeve/case he initially offered. Mind you I had to pay cash, giving up a tantalizing 94 AirMiles, but I had my deal.
The snag at the counter came in the form of a daily withdrawal limit on my bank card. So I motored over to the nearest TD Canada Trust, personally withdrew many hundreds of dollars, placed into a plain brown envelope and hustled back to the store. It reminded me of a time 10 years ago when I used a few different accounts to pay for an engagement ring.