I agree wholeheartedly with the others who have responded that I felt much more positively toward Kumiko, and that I really enjoyed watching her emerge from her solitude after she shared her past. I also marvelled at how so often we don't react the best way to what we already know until it's spelled out. To clarify, I mean that most of the people I have ever known who were distant or difficult had a legitimate and profound hurt that caused them to be that way. For some reason, we know this usually the case but fail to react to them with empathy or compassion until after they have illuminated us. At the same time, it's amazing how we go around holding our own stories hostage to fear of rejection or the delusion that no one can understand us. MollyC put it really well with her bridge metaphor!