“Before my wife turned vegetarian, I’d always thought of her as completely unremarkable in every way. To be frank, the first time I met her I wasn’t even attracted to her. Middling height; bobbed hair neither long nor short; jaundiced, sickly-looking skin; somewhat prominent cheekbones; her timid, sallow aspect told me all I needed to know. As she came up to the table where I was waiting, I couldn’t help but notice her shoes -the plainest black shows imaginable. And that walk of hers-neither fast nor slow, striding nor mincing”.
«The library was even more hushed than usual. My new leather shoes clacked against the gray linoleum. Their hard, dry sound was unlike my normal footsteps. Every time I get new shoes, it takes me a while to get used to their noise. A woman I’d never seen before was sitting at the circulation desk, reading a thick book. It was extraordinarily wide. She looked as if she were reading the right-hand page with her right eye, and the left-hand page with her left.»
«Brynjar hugged his jacket tighter around him, thinking longingly of his warm hut and wondering what on earth he was doing out here. It just went to show how dull his job was that he should jump at any chance of a diversion, even if it meant having to endure the biting wind. As usual at this late hour the port he was supposed to be keeping an eye on was deserted, and it suddenly struck him that he didn’t know it any other way. He avoided its daytime bustle, preferring it like this – black sea, unmanned ships – as if seeing how it came to life when he wasn’t there brought home to him his own insignificance”.
«The first time Nakajima stayed over, I dreamed of my dead mom. Maybe it has having him in the room that did it, after having been alone so long. I hadn’t slept next to anyone since my dad and I stayed in my mom’s hospital room. I kept waking up and then, relieved that she hadn’t stopped breathing, going back to sleep…Αnd it occurred to me that I was surrounded by people who could die at any minute, and in some odd way their presence made me feel more at ease here, in the hospital, than I did outside. When things get really bad, you take comfort of the placeness of a place».