I had to quote it because it was absolute genius.
I was nervous the first time we made love, which made things awkward. I apologized to her.
"Aren't we polite!" she said. "No need to apologize for everything."
After her shower she threw on a bathrobe, grabbed two beers from the fridge, and handed one to me.
"Are you a good driver?" she asked.
"I just got my license, so I wouldn't say so. Just average."
She smiled. "Same with me. I think I'm pretty good, but my friends don't agree. Which makes me average, too, I suppose. You must know a few people who think they're great drivers, right?"
"Yeah, I guess I do."
"And there must be some who aren't very good."
I nodded. She took a quiet sip of beer and thought about it.
"To a certain extent those kinds of things are inborn. Talent, you could call it. Some people are nimble; others are all thumbs.... Some people are attentive, others aren't. Right?"
Again I nodded.
"OK, consider this. Say you're going to go on a long trip with someone by car. And the two of you will take turns driving. Which type of person would you choose? One who's a good driver but inattentive, or an attentive person who's not such a good driver?"
"Probably the second one," I said.
"Me too," she replied. "What we have here is very similar. Good or bad, nimble or clumsy--those aren't important. What's important is being attentive. Staying calm, being alert to the things around you."
"Alert?" I asked.
She just smiled and didn't say anything.
A while later we made love a second time, and this time it was a smooth, congenial ride. Being alert--I think I was starting to get it. For the first time I saw how a woman reacts in the throes of passion.
First Vintage International Edition, April 2002
Copywright (c) 2001 by Haruki Murakami
pg.39 - 41