"Oh, so you know about the weather that's coming in tomorrow afternoon then"
"No", I said casually, I don't"
"Oh, yes it's going to pour down for the next two days - I wouldn't be planning on doing anything outside if I were you."
Which, when you've just driven 300kms to go for a walk or paddle int the Abel Tasman National Park, is exactly the news you don't want to hear.
So much for the fun of "not planning".
Then it got better: "You're looking for somewhere to stay - I think I just sold our last room in town - would you be prepared to drive a bit?"
And that was my introduction to the far north of the south island.
The lady who was telling me this was a very friendly staff member at the local information centre in Motueka which I had called into in desperation after driving past hotel after motel with "No Vacancy" signs outside.
In the end she found me a fabulous little cabin at Marahau (30+ something kilometres up the road) where I ended up spending two nights.
And she was also right - the weather really did come in, and so I was grateful that I took her advice and booked myself on an early boat the next morning that took me the short distance to Anchorage Hut in the Abe Tasman National Park allowing me to do the short 11km walk back to my accommodation and still get back before the first drops of rain began to fall.
As you can see from the photos above, it was a lovely boat trip and a very pleasant walk back, although after three days out on the Old Ghost Road, where meeting someone was a novelty and a reason to stop and have a chat, I have to admit that all the people (and there were a lot of people on the track) kind of got to me a little, and I really didn't enjoy the track as much as if I had perhaps done the two in reverse.
But, I did get back just as the skies opened and I did find the most excellent hamburger joint in the world just a short walk down from my accommodation, and it was nice just to chillax and listen to the rain falling on my roof.
I do maybe, kind of, wish I'd thought to bring all my laundry in from outside though, but hey - them's the perils of poor planning.