"I realize it's not my business, but if your family has wealth then I suggest you settle things soon. Best to receive your due while your father is still of sound mind. When something unforeseen happens, it's division of assets that most often leads to strife."
I didn't give much mind to Sensei's words. I wasn't worried for myself, nor for my father or mother. No one in my family, I believed, warranted such concern. Further, it was unlike Sensei to expound on a practical matter, and it caught me off guard. Deference to Sensei as my elder, however, compelled me to listen without reproach.
"Forgive me if talk of your father's death is uncomfortable, but all men must eventually die. Even a man in the best of health may go at any time."
Sensei's tone was unusually somber.
"Such talk doesn't bother me in the least." I cleared the way for Sensei to continue.
"How many brothers and sisters did you say you have?" Sensei asked.
Sensei asked about the members of my immediate family. He also asked about my aunts and uncles and their circumstances. Finally he asked, "Are they all good people?"
"None stand out as particularly dishonest. They're country folk, for the most part."
"What makes you so sure that country folk are honest?"
I struggled with this question. Sensei, for his part, did not wait on my answer.