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News From the Sun Bow Front:

Sept 2016:

Dear friends and family,

Back again, back again. Once more with feeling.

Returned to Russia and Turkey this past September.

Russia first:

The Ruble has fallen against the Dollar 64 to one. Made for fabulous shopping...

In St Petersburg, we found mink hats for almost nothing in their 'dirt bazaar' (from a Dagistani lady.) Wow!

Pictures of Putin on everything you can imagine are for sale everywhere.

Best food we found was in a Georgian restaurant. Super delicious, well priced, and good service too. My Russian family says Georgian is where one eats for good food and good service.


The Turkish Lira has also fallen against the dollar - now at 3 Lira to one.

Also great local pricing - restaurants, and marked price shops catering to locals.

We visited both Istanbul and Konya:

Turkey was so quiet and welcoming to us. We saw few tourists, and the restaurants were eager for customers.

The Covered bazaar was very quiet and, aside from Turkish and Arab customers, we saw very few foreign tourists.

People were hungry for business and we made some major scores.

Click here for a slide show of images from the September trip

As to post coup Turkey:

My friend Michael hit the nail on its head when he commented: "Just as 911 was a seminal point for Americans, so the aborted coup is a seminal point for Turks."

We asked all around, and even our anti Erdogan friends were opposed to the coup.

A friend in Konya remarked that as soon as he heard of the coup, he went onto the street and brought his pistol.

Everyone, from all political parties spoke against Gulen. Seems he has no overt supporters now.

If you recall our visit to Gopali Tekke near Urfa a couple of years ago, the Director of the Urfa museum who gave us pre opening access to their exhibition of the finds from that dig, was arrested as a Gullenist. So far that is the only one we are aware of personally.

Turkish Airlines published a complete magazine of coup pictures and a timeline of events; in Turkish and English, and I was told, in all the languages of the countries they fly to.

Stephanie and Lou, who also just returned, had similar experiences. Yes, it's a fabulous time to visit. The innate generosity and hospitality of the Turkish people towards travelers, overrides any potential feelings of anti foreigners.

We were there just prior to the Feast of Sacrifice. And people were preparing for the event - many took a week off to celebrate. Folks in Konya were very hospitable to us, and we felt no threats or sense of danger. One young lady (selling Turkish Delight) was thrilled by my T Shirt, and called me 'one cool dude.'

The Museum of Jellaluddin Rumi is now a tomb and mosque. It is now free to enter. In addition, there are plans to build a major museum to house and show all their artifacts.

Food was up to our past experiences: Fresh fish, slow cooked lamb, and yummy beans. What's not to love.

We are awaiting the tunnel across the Bosphorous, so the fast train from Konya can reach European Istanbul.

Some reminders:

We no longer do repairs, sell retail, or do cleaning... For those of you who wish repairs and cleaning:

we recommend Frank S. Eways in Ruckersville, Virginia. (434) 985 1784. they will pick up and deliver.

For those who wish fabulous kilims to own and enjoy:

we recommend the Mezzanine Gallery at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. One of the very best collections of kilim art we've seen to date. (212) 570-3767

And finally:

an Afghan friend (Sadr) has taken over our old store on South Street. He is now open for business, and is a sweet and honorable man. Do pass on our regards.

And, we are hoping to be open for tea and conversation each Monday from 1 - 4 in our new location. More on that soon.

Thanks for being with us on the journey.

Looking forwards to more adventures together saul for the sunbow crew October 3, 2016

Saul and the Sun Bow Crew

Click here for a slide show of images from the September trip

Sun Bow Trading Company
By Appointment
Outfitting Downtown Charlottesville since 1978.
(434) 293 8821