I decided today that Minnie and I could do with a longer walking route, and decided to go the extended way to get to our local lake. As we rounded one corner, I noticed this man and he would walk down the road, then back, and did this a couple of times by the time we had reached him. So I asked him if he was okay and needed any help. He actually had a map folded up in his hands and showed me the lake, and wondered how to reach it.
So I pointed the way to him, ie go to the next corner, turn left, walk to the end and between two houses is a small walkway where you can reach the lake. I also mentioned not to worry, as we were heading that way as well. But due to Minnie having to smell and pee on every blade of grass along the way and we hadn't been along this route for a long time, it would take much longer for us. Of course I didn't go into all that detail for him.
We eventually reached him and I noticed he was doing the same up the road and down the road and couldn't see the little pathway. Before he disappeared further up the road, I had to use my best foghorn voice to yell and point out the walkway.
Ten thousand blades of grass later we reached him, admiring the lake. He said to me NZ is so beautiful and a wonderful country. So I asked him where he was from and he said Shanghai. So of course by that time I have to be my usual probing, nosey self and ask him what he was doing here in Hamilton (I also wondered what was so special about our suburban lake but that would be too nosey).
Apparently his daughter is an international student here, and he has only been in NZ for one week. We had a lovely conversation. When Minnie decided she had had enough of the niceties and it was time to carry on, he said he wanted to take a photo of me to show his wife and daughter that evening. I offered to also take one of him with the lake in the background. Then a little switch went off in my head and I said, well I would like a photo of you to show my husband this evening.
So photos were taken. We both went our merry way, having enjoyed for just a short while, the company of a stranger. And Minnie wouldn't have a bar of any of this and refused to be in any photos.