Saturday, April 2, 2011


Yesterday we went to the bazaar at the ISAF compound. It was a very interesting trip...evidently I have lots of friends here in Afghanistan as every shop keeper addressed me as "my friend, my friend" and invited me into their shop. There were tons of shops at the bazaar. There was no shortage of silk and pashmina scarves and such, but the two main things we saw people trying to buy were: gems and rugs.

We got an education in rugs from a couple of career military guys that had traveled everywhere and knew what they were doing. We learned that silk rugs only get hung on the wall or placed under a table that doesn't get used...they are not daily use rugs.

They also showed us how to tell the difference between machine made rugs and hand made rugs.

Some of the most beautiful were the wool rugs with the silk inlay. The shopkeeper was very gracious and offered hugs and tea to everyone that came buy. For some of the larger hand-made rugs, the bazaar price was upwards of $1,000.

Not sure if the information is accurate or not, but we were told that back in the states you may pay $12-15,000 for the same rug. Not that I'm buying, but they were really beautiful.

Maybe next week, we'll sit for an education on what to look for when buying loose gems and stones...lots of stalls had these for sale.


  1. Kevin, I'm sure any of these would make a nice gift for your parents! Love, MOM

  2. That is our one regret from India that we did not buy a rug, even a small one to hang on the wall would have been a neat memoire.