Strangers passing in the street

“Have you ever had that experience… a feeling of profound regret after passing some stranger in the street? I’ve had it often. I think to myself, ‘What a delightful looking person!’ or ‘What a beautiful woman!’ or ‘I’ve never seen anyone quite as attractive as that before.’ It happens when I’m just strolling around the streets, or sitting next to a stranger in the theatre or walking down the steps from a concert hall. But once they’ve gone, I know I’ll probably never meet them again in my life… One can’t stop and suddenly speak to a complete stranger, can one? Perhaps that’s life, but when it happens I could die of sadness. I feel somehow drained and empty. I want to follow them to the ends of the earth, but I can’t. The only way to chase a person that way is to kill him.” Yasunari Kawabata, The Lake (  from here )

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