A friend and his wife are staying with me. They are back in NZ for a couple of weeks from the UK.
Was very amused to hear of their interaction with Immigration NZ at Auckland Airport.
The Passport Officer noticed he was a returning Kiwi, but his wife was not. She commented that he had been away for a while and asked if he would be having a Kiwi Mince Pie now he is back.
He replied in the affirmative, and she then turned to his wife and asked her if she would let him have a pie when he is in New Zealand, explaining it is the Kiwi thing to do.
She then went one step further and told the wife that in fact she was making it a condition of her entry into New Zealand that she would let him eat a pie while in New Zealand.
My friend was pleased enough with this assistance from Immigration New Zealand, but even more delighted when the Passport Officer became even more supportive and further declared to his wife that her entry conditions now included letting him do whatever he wanted to in New Zealand and asked her to verbally assent to these conditions, to which she did – to his great delight.
I doubt there are many countries where you can have that sort of humourous banter with government officials. It would never happen I suspect in the UK, but it did reflect our very Kiwi humour – gently hassling. And it actually made for a great welcome into NZ (for him anyway!) from the usual boring dross of immigration queues.
Long may it last.
I suspect the only people upset with this exchange will be the humour-impaired or the anti-obesity coalition that keeps trying to get pies banned!