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I really enjoy giving people directions on the street, which seems like a rather odd thing to like to do..

I think in part it reminds me that in spite of the mistrust that exists in society today, and the social isolation that pervades modern life, sometimes two strangers will just talk to one another, and one will offer help with no expectation of reward.. It's the same when I (very rarely) ask for directions - a helpful response is a pleasant surprise because the media has lowered my expectations so much..

I think another part of it is just a sense of being grown up, or something.. That feeling that you are having an adult interaction here.. There's so much "banter" in day to day life, at work, in the home, that it's so easy to remember that everybody used to be a kid once, and for the most part, they still remember it.. Simple, adult interactions are often the only way to remind yourself that you're also a grown up now, because few other parts of life seem to give that impression..

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(Deleted comment)
I pretty much go through life memorising maps, so I'm totally the opposite :o)

I also like giving directions to people on the street! To add to your reasoning, I see two more points. First, when people ask you for directions, that means you must appear reasonably intelligent and friendly. Second, it also means that people think you know the directions, which implies that you belong in your setting. Nothing thrills me more than getting stopped for directions in a city I'm just visiting. Since I also spend a lot of time looking at and memorizing maps, I can often give the directions anyway. And it makes me excited that I look local enough that people would ask.

Nothing thrills me more than getting stopped for directions in a city I'm just visiting.

What, so you can go on to disappoint them with your lack of intimate local knowledge? How cruel ;o)

(I know you went on to address that very eventuality in the next sentence, but I had already thought of my sarcastic repy, and was not to be dissuaded)

I did enjoy appearing local in Amsterdam.. When we got on the boat for our canal tour, they greeted me in Dutch, and greeted tma in English - always nice to know that you're not just projecting "I'm a clueless foreigner" vibes ;o)

when I was in Amsterdam, I was able to give my most awesome set of directions ever. There was a couple that only spoke Spanish, and I gave them a serious set of directions to museums via the tram. It was pretty sweet.

Well, you are getting kind of old there, Sparky. ;)

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