Saturday, August 24, 2002

Young Ladies' Conversation

One day in early autumn about 20 years ago, I was on a bus. Then a conversation between two young ladies was heard. One of them said, "I went camping this summer with our group." The other said, "So, you were seen naked by lads, weren't you?" The first lady replied, "Maybe. In the morning a lad pointed his front side and said to me, 'Look at this. This is the proof of my vigor.'" And both of them chuckled.

Having no experience of camping, I do not know why lads can see ladies naked in camping. Anyway, I thought that this was not the kind of talk to be made in the public vehicle. The ladies' voices were however so fresh and innocent that I liked their conversation after all. When autumn comes, I often remind myself of that private talk between the nymphets.

Sunday, August 18, 2002

A Mathematician's Desire

In the 15-Aug evening issue of Asahi-shimbun, the mathematician and essayist Masahiko Fujiwara writes a comical essay entitled "Odoriko Motomu (A dancer wanted)". When his mathematical work comes to a difficulty, he goes on a trip as he pleases. During those trips he wishes to meet such a lady as the heroine dancer in the Nobel-Prize winning writer Kawabata Yasunari's novel, "Izu-no-odoriko (The dancer of Izu)". The hero of the novel, a high school student, found the dancer crying without being able to say him "Good-bye".

Prof. Fujiwara writes that the lady whom he wishes to encounter is not necessarily be a dancer but that it is important for her to cry without being able to say "Good-bye." His desire was intensified because his wife got love letters from an English gentleman. However, the desire has never come true, and thus he has lost hope for its realization a little.

Everyman possibly has a similar desire of having a romantic adventure on a trip, but no one can write about it with an excellent sense of humor like Prof. Fujiwara. I am only afraid that as a result of that essay he might get so many letters from ladies who want to be a dancer for him.

I have memories of some young ladies with whom I talked on the train during my trips in younger days. A physics student going to get an exam for the grauate course, an office lady of Hiroshima, a mysterious lady who majored in English literature, . . . I do not think that they remember me. Each one of them and I enjoyed our conversation to some extent, but said simply "Good-bye" to each other when we took off the train.