The one that got away

D’oh!  On Friday I was walking past a good second-hand bookshop and noticed a handsomely illustrated book on generals of the American Civil War. 

It caught my attention because my father-in-law, whose birthday it is soon, is a history lover who counts the Civil War among one of his particular interests.  (This is a guy who re-watches the movie “Gettysburg” every few months, and sometimes quotes Civil War generals to us.)  So the book looked like a definite ‘must’ to check out.

But I was hurrying to an appointment at the time, so made a mental note to come back and thumb it over on Monday; after all, the store’s stock doesn’t turn over all that fast – I pass its window display most days.

You know what happened, of course.  Today I went back to the shop, and the book was no longer there.  Somebody else had found it interesting too.  Alas, alas.

I know there must be a moral to this story, but for the life of me I can’t think what.  I genuinely couldn’t spare the time on Friday to pop in and buy it, so “buy unique gifts as soon as you see them” doesn’t work.  And ninety-five times out of a hundred, the book would still have been there on the Monday.

My only consolation is that I already do have some nice birthday presents for him, stashed away.  But I’m still thinking about “the one that got away”.


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