Monday, October 3, 2011


Several years ago, when I was working as a barista in an Abilene coffee & tobacco shop, one of my regulars surprised me.

On my birthday, Alexis, this girl I'd only known for maybe a couple of months, brought me a present.

A set of three gnomes. You know, the garden variety. I was so giddy over this gift! It was the perfect gift, and somehow, she just knew it was perfect.

They became my kitchen gnomes.

They had been guarding my kitchen for about four years, when one day, one tipped over...and his hat and the top of his head broke off.

I cried.

over my gnome.

and I emailed my friend (now living in Australia) to tell her about the gnome tragedy.

Surgery was successful and he was glued back together to guard over my kitchen for many more years. But I always remember that he is wounded. And I lift him with extra care now.

There's something about certain gifts. Finding the perfect gift. Giving the perfect gift. Receiving the perfect gift. Using it. Cherishing it. Smiling at the memory it evokes.

Perhaps the greater gift is that Alexis is still my friend. And perhaps THAT is why those gnomes mean so damn much to me.

Prompt #75: What is your perfect gift memory? Given or received.

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