Here is a puzzling little story from one of our readers, J. K.
This happened to my mother and a friend in the early 1980s, in Moscow, USSR. They went on a trip there with a group of other tourists.
One day they fancied some fur hats, so they found a shop that sold them. My mother doesn't remember if she was told about it by a hotel receptionist (that's what she thinks) or somebody else told them about it. Anyway, they found a shop and bought some nice, cheap fur hats.
That same afternoon or maybe the day after, soon thereafter in any case, they decided to go back and buy some more fur hats as gifts for friends and family, so they went back to the shop.
The shop wasn't there.
They walked the street up and down searching for the shop, they asked people, including a man standing on the doorway next to where the shop had been, but they were told there was no shop and there hadn't been one there for many years.
TBH, I don't think this was a timeslip but rather some fishy business in very fishy times in a very fishy country. But my mother still puzzles over this incident today.
Thank you, J. K.
What a lovely - and oddly amusing - story this is!
I must say, I agree with your "fishy" assessment.
Assuming they didn't mistake the street and the location of the shop, my first thought was: was it an illegal shop, perhaps - one that only operated when they knew customers were coming? (The hotel receptionist could have informed the "shop" owner that customers were coming.)
But, as logical as this may seem, it does strike me as odd that such a highly risky operation could be performed - and in Moscow, of all places.
If any of our readers have an idea of what may have happened, please let us know what you think.