After a month of classes, I was beginning to feel drained. I walked the streets with a certain air of displeasure. In my room, my gaze wandered wistfully from one thing to another. Visions of Sensei came to mind. I wanted to see him again.
The first time I called at his home, Sensei was away. The second time, as I remember it, was the following Sunday. It was wonderful weather, the kind of day where the clear sky cleanses the soul. This time, too, Sensei was away. In Kamakura, Sensei had told me himself that he seldom went out. He'd even described himself as reclusive. Having failed twice now to see him, I recalled these words, and I was seized with a vague feeling of discontent. I lingered in the entryway, looking with some hesitation at the maidservant. The maidservant, who had taken my card on the previous occasion, bid me to wait and went back inside. A woman, presumably the lady of the house, appeared in her place. She was quite beautiful.
She kindly informed me of Sensei's whereabouts. Every month, she told me, he visited the cemetery in Zōshigaya to place flowers at the grave of a certain departed soul. "He just left, not ten minutes ago," she said with a look of sympathy. I thanked her and stepped back outside. After walking a block toward the center of town, I decided to stroll through Zōshigaya. Part of my thinking was that I might see Sensei. I immediately reversed my course.