“Where’s the measuring tape? Did you move it?”
“I didn’t touch it.”
“Must have been the Tomte.”
“Who ate the last piece of gingerbread.”
“The Tomtenisse, then.”
The Norwegian Nisse, the Swedish Tomtenisse or Tomte, and the Finnish Tonttu are always convenient when something is missing, though they also are credited with bringing good luck sometimes. Mostly though, they were seen as tricksters. My favorite story about the Nisse was one told to me by one of our old neighbors whose Norwegian accent was so strong that even the bears in his stories had accents. “The bear, he went, oomph-ya!”
So the village of Geiranger was beset by a Nisse who was constantly leaving the cattle gate open or letting the sheep loose in the square. He would toss pinecones down the chimney and put vinegar in the lemonade. He made them so unhappy, they decided to just pack up the whole town and move across the fjord to Hellesylt.
And so they did. With great stealth, because Nisse can be anywhere and everywhere, the people of Geiranger put their clothing and household items into barrels, to look like they were going to market. And then one day, as the Nisse was sleeping, they put all their stuff on carts, and drove all their pigs, sheep, and cattle to Hellesylt. The entire town moved in just one day. Every man, woman, child and mouse.
They slept that night, a righteous sleep of relief and exhaustion. It was hard to start over, but they were certain the Nisse, bound to the land, was left behind. But then, when they got up in the morning and went to draw water, who should they see relaxing on the well housing but Nisse, who stretched and smiled, and said, “It’s a fine day for moving.”
Mon Cheri Nisse Greta & Hans Red Rare @ Arcade
Ariskea Winter in Canada Cabin @ Arcade
Kalopsia Metal Deer @ Arcade
Rustica Charles Browne Xmas Tree