Here we go again. After two recent jacket purchases have been returned for being too small, once more I make the attempt. Having retired, I felt I owed it to myself to get something really decent, preferably new, theoretically the jacket to end all jacket buying (but we know that ain’t going to happen). The AN-J-3 project having proved to be a failure, I turned my attention to something I’ve coveted for many years-Aero front quarter horsehide. Way back before I had ever heard of Eastman et al, a mate of mine who works for a local printer did some work for Aero, and the staff were offered a jacket at a discount. He got a Veste de rallye in FQHH, a lovely thing which he still owns but seldom wears (it’s not often cold enough), but I always admired it. After much head scratching, I decided another Highwayman was the way to go-I had one years ago in buffalo, and a nice copy I got from Peter Graham is a favourite. There wasn’t much on the sale page, and ordering a full price example was probably a bit more than the budget (or the wife) could tolerate. I spent several weeks poring over Ebay, came close to pulling the trigger a couple of times, only stopping because what I was contemplating wasn’t quite what I wanted (an otherwise very nice steerhide Barnstormer came and went during this period-just didn’t do it for me). It was FQHH or nothing. Several in steerhide, but that wasn’t going to do it. Only one HH example appeared on EBay UK, quite nice, but a bit steep and with a bit of wear/patina (bloody shed loads in Japan or the US!). I tried a cheeky offer, the bloke counter-offered with a price twenty quid cheaper than the BIN, and I walked away, but last night I was close to going back and doing the deed. It just didn’t quite excite me enough to part with that sort of coin. For some reason I had another glance at the Aero sale page, and this had appeared. Measurements appeared to be OK (they seem to run big, and I have repeatedly checked with the tape measure), and if I was ordering one from scratch, this combination of leather, lining and hardware is exactly what I would have gone for. Some stray stitch holes in the shoulder are the only fault, which I can either live with or see if I can sort something-I have a couple of ideas. It seemed to be a sign, too good an opportunity to miss. I always prefer to regret doing something, rather than something I haven’t done, so I was up front with the wife, telling her exactly what I was doing and why (no ordering and hoping she’d be out when it arrived this time!)-and the deed was done. So wish me luck-I don’t think I can stand having another disappointment after all the anticipation!