Anyway, the old man crouched down and said hello to Siku, then stood up and smiled. He began to tell us how he had his dogs out this morning, but it was so beautiful out this afternoon, he had to come out for another hike. He looked right at me, with his wrinkled skin and sharp, crisp blue eyes. Really made eye contact with us both. He told us, "After the next switchback, about 20 yards, look down and to the left. There is the most tremendous display of buttercups. The first I've seen up here." He smiled to Adam and me, and told us to have a good day. We then noticed Siku rolling in the horse poop, and I chased off after our freshly groomed dog. He laughed to us and said, "he's just being a dog" waved and headed on.
It wasn't until our way down, that I realized that out of more than a dozen people we passed, he was the only person who spoke a word to us. The only one that said hello, and the only one who was interested enough in conversation to share an experience with us. It made me think of this John Prine song, and somewhere out there I want to thank this man for helping me to remember to be kind to people. And say hello.