Yesterday in the evening, my wife accidentally spilled a cup of water on the corner of her laptop. She dried it up pretty quickly, but the system now won't boot up. I opened it and took out the hard disk and found that, indeed, some water seemed to have gotten inside it. We let it dry overnight, but alas, as of this post, the hard disk is not spinning (it makes a sound like it wants to, but it doesn't and the computer shuts down), thus the computer can't boot up.
It turns out she had a pretty good backup of her writings (my wife, like me, is a writer), but pretty much all else is in that hard disk and we don't know what to do. She has a Dell Inspiron 1200, and it seems that model has been discontinued, so I can't get any info on their site about such a problem. It is also out of warranty, so even the call to ask what can be done will cost me up to $50. I'm sure I can find a replacement hard drive online for a good price, so that's not my concern; it's how to recover all that data that has us both worried.
I may have to bite the bullet and call Dell, see what they tell us, and worse yet, may have to go with a data recovery specialist, and that's not cheap by any stretch of the imagination.
I once lost all my data in the Great Crash of 2002 and I know how much it hurts. Could we be witnessing the beginning of the Great Splash of 2006? I hope not.