When I arrived in the U.K. to do two years' research in Cambridge, the first thing to do was to find a home.
I looked around, and found a cozy place on Missleton Court, in the southern suburb. The owner was a professor at University of Cambridge. We shook hands as we agreed on the rent.
There was a small wooden chair in the house. The professor pointed to the chair, and said, "Well, this chair has a sentimental value for me. My father made it for me when I was a child."
Maybe it was the way the professor said these words to me. Maybe it was the particular circumstances. I had just arrived in U.K., preparing myself for days in a foreign soil. The words "sentimental value" associated with the parental love probably struck the chord in my heart.
How strange is the human memory system! To this day, I remember vividly how the professor said it, on the ground floor room, as the sun came through the small green house attached to the side, in which I used to drink beer in the evening, as I looked up at the swallows crisscrossing the sky.