"Lovely morning to be walking and thinking lovely thoughts", the gentleman commented.
"Lovely, well, yes, sort of, I guess... I'm a teacher, and I'm just mapping out my first week back with the students, and thinking about how best to start the school year with them!"
The couple were all knowing smiles and supportive noises: Turns out he is also a teacher from Ontario, retired seven years! We chatted at length about the ups (students, learning) and downs (nasty politics, lack of resources) of the profession, and then wished one another well.
I continued on my way, picking up a few beach treasures for a "first week of school activity" for my Grade sixes before heading back to the red path leading to the house.