Agabai Ashiorv

Dear Daniel,

I, Agabai Ashiorv, am the sole proprietor of a small business in Istanbul.  I specialize in sale of fine rugs from Central Asia.  I recently returned from a business trip to increase my inventory of Kazakh and Turkmen rugs.  I am writing to inform you about this trip.

I spent about a week traveling through Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan, investigating and buying rugs from local weavers, and my purchases were pleasing. At the concluding of my business, I spent a single night in Ashgabat before returning to Istanbul.  I left the hotel only briefly that night to go out to dinner with some business partners.

My Shop of Fine Carpets


The next morning I flew out of Ashgabat and arrived safely in Istanbul. When I returned home and unpacked my suitcase, I was surprised by a leather bag found in my suitcase.  I never saw this bag before and do not know how it came to be in my suitcase. The bag is marked and worn, as if it has been on many trips.

When I opened the bag, I found a notebook and a memory card for a digital camera.  I read through the notebook, hoping to find some information about about who this belonged to.  But there was no indentifying it.

I then called the airline department of luggage.  They received my name and phone number but said nobody informed them about a missing notebook or memory card. Then I called the hotel in Ashgabat.  Again, they have no record of anyone missing this.

So, I decided take the card to a camera store to see if there were identifying pictures on it. Hoping that the pictures will provide me with some identification.

I was surprised to see that the pictures were most unusual.  They were not pictures of mosques, markets, and camels.  Those are tourist pictures I expected to see.  There were only six pictures, but they were a curiosity.

When I went home, I took the notebook out of the leather bag.  I distributed the pictures on my table and sat down with the notebook to see what I would understand.

I opened the notebook to page one and have read page one.  When reading this page, I studied the first picture.  The words and picture seem to match.  I read the second page and it appears to be made for picture two.  One by one, I corresponded the pictures with each other.  Now, when the pictures have inscriptions, they seem even more mysterious.

I have been possessed by these items for almost four months.  I was in further contact to airline, my hotel, and the embassy in Turkmenistan.  No one has informed any message of absent notebooks or a missing camera card.

The next morning my granddaugher Afet visited.  I planned our trip to the park, and I put my coat on while Afet ran through the house.  As Afet passed through the kitchen for one moment, she looked at the pictures.  She stopped and studied the pictures very closely and has been very interested.

While we were at the park, she inquired about the pictures and kept wondering that I didn’t know who photographed them.  When Afet went home in the afternoon, she used her computer to see what she could learn.  She discovered your web site and that you have one of the same pictures.  But, I am also sending one of the others and the notebook writings.  If you know this man, please write back so I can send the notebook and card to him.

Most sincerely yours,

Agabai Ashiorv

This is one picture from the memory card.  In the notebook I discovered a caption that was very identical to your story:



As I held the object and listened to it hum, it began to quiver. I watched in amazement as it began to glow, dimly at first and then more brightly. Soon it was shining with a warm and beautiful light.


Below is another picture from the memory card.  I have never heard of this rum boat.


We waited quietly in the dark for what seemed like hours. The moon was almost setting when, suddenly, the fog began to thin. We heard a faint splash. There, appearing from the shadows, was the old rum boat. It drifted by, paddled by a ghost, and disappeared into the darkness.




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