I thought this peculiar. However, I was not there to scrutinize Sensei, so I simply let it pass. As I look back now, the approach I took toward Sensei is a point of pride. I believe it instilled our relationship with warmth and humanity. Had I probed in the least at Sensei's psyche, had I sought to analyze him, the bond of fellowship between us would have snapped on the spot. I was young, of course, and not at all conscious of my own comportment. Perhaps that renders it all the more praiseworthy. I shudder to think of all that I could have done wrong, and of all that would have been lost. Even as things were, Sensei was ever vigilant, even anxiously so, with respect to his privacy.
I came to visit Sensei regularly. I was at his door two or three times each month. One day, when my visits had come to be frequent, Sensei suddenly turned and asked me, "What draws you so often to visit a man like me?"
"What draws me? I can't say it's anything in particular. -- Do I impose on you?"
"I didn't say you impose."
Indeed, there was no indication from Sensei that I was unwelcome. I was aware that Sensei kept very limited company. I knew that of his former classmates, two or three at most resided in Tōkyō. Once in a while I shared the parlor with students from Sensei's home region, but it was clear to me that none were as close to him as I was.