Winston Peters appears to be in good spirits three-and-a-half weeks after taking time off for surgery on what was described as an old rugby injury.
Peters, the Deputy Prime Minister and leader of New Zealand First, posted an image to his social media accounts on Wednesday, showing him walking his dog Beau.
"Both getting fit and enjoying the fresh air," Peters, who had still not been cleared to fly as of Monday, said in the post.
The Prime Minister said on Monday that she had spoken to Peters, 74, over the weekend and several times over the course of his time away from Parliament.
"He's still waiting for clearance to fly. I understand he doesn't believe it will be too far away," she said at her post-Cabinet press conference.
"He's obviously been working from home while he awaits that clearance. I think he probably is a bit frustrated at not being here, as you can imagine."
The Prime Minister announced on August 19 that Peters would miss Parliament after suffering from what she said was an old rugby injury.
"He's having a small surgical procedure to address an old leg issue and has been advised post-procedure to have some days avoiding travel and not bearing weight," she said at the time.
In a video posted to Peters' social media account on August 29, the minister said he was house-bound until he got clearance to travel and was working from home.
"Just a brief message of thanks to all those people who were kind enough to send me messages of support during my recent time in hospital," he said in the video.
Ardern was asked by a reporter on Monday why Peters doesn't take the train to Wellington.
"I actually haven't put that question to him. Maybe he's factoring in the discomfort of that. He has had a medical event," she said.
"Maybe you should ask him that yourself - in fact, I dare you to."
Peters' office has been contacted for comment.