The tradition surrounding garden gnomes was that they needed to be stolen. Not exactly stolen, more moved… A garden gnome should mysteriously shift position or place overnight. There should be no inkling as to the person responsible for such a deed.
Sometimes a kidnapped letter would be sent to the owner: We have your gnome. Sometimes the note was accompanied by a hint of how to get the gnome back.
Merle had three garden gnomes. She had placed them over the years in her front garden. From there they could be seen from the road side. She awaited the appearance of a thief. Being taken and moved would be the fulfilment of a gnome’s dream!
But after seven years not a single gnome had been touched. Her participation in the heavenly gnome undertaking was a comprehensive flop.
Merle tossed her gnomes in the waste bin and went to the garden centre. She bought a couple of flamingos; those pink plastic things with the long legs. At least the flamingos wouldn’t create any needless expectation.
On the first night in the front garden, they went missing.