Not everything was lost in the flow of time. [...] We truly believed in something back then, and we knew we were the kind of people capable of believing in something--with all our hearts. And that kind of hope will never simply vanish.
[...] That if he intensely concentrated his feelings on one fixed point, like a lens focused on paper, bursting it into flames, his heart would suffer a fatal blow. More than anything he hoped for this. But months passed, and contrary to his expectations, his heart didn't stop. The heart apparently doesn't stop that easily.
Our lives are like a complex musical score, Tsukuru thought. Filled with all sorts of cryptic writing, sixteenth and thirty-second notes and other strange signs. It's next to impossible to correctly interpret these, and even if you could, and then could transpose them into the correct sounds, there's no guarantee that people would correctly understand, or appreciate, the meaning therein. No guarantee it would make people happy.
"[...] You don't lack anything. Be confident and be bold. That's all you need. Never let fear and stupid pride make you lose someone who's precious to you."
"We survived. You and I. And those who survive have a duty. Our duty is to do our best to keep on living. Even if our lives are not perfect."
In reality, though, none of this ever happened. In reality something very different happened. And that fact was more significant now than anything else.
The beating of her heart kept time with the slap of the little boat against the pier.
"Important to me, perhaps. But maybe not to her. I came here to find that out."
"It sounds kind of complicated."
"Maybe too complicated for me to explain in English."
Olga laughed. "Some things in life are too complicated to explain in any language."
It was a different sense of isolation from what he normally felt in Japan. And not such a bad feeling, he decided. Being alone in two senses of the word was maybe like a double negation of isolation. In other words, it made perfect sense for him, a foreigner, to feel isolated here. There was nothing odd about it at all. [...] He was in exactly the right place.