Mitch now needs to explain where he's been this whole time.
Not only did he lose touch with Morrie, but he also left behind pretty much everything else from his college days, too.
He suffers from the typical post-college blues: paying rent, working random jobs, and waiting for something to make his life change. He's got a vague idea that he wants to be a musician, but it doesn't amount to anything.
He has a first encounter with death when his favorite uncle dies quickly in his mid-40s. Mitch doesn't know how to deal with his uncle's last couple months on earth, but after the death he finds himself valuing his life a whole lot more.
Without wasting time, he get's a master's degree and starts working all the time.
He gets a job with the Detroit Free Press as a sports journalist, buys a house, and marries a woman who somehow "loved me despite my schedule and the constant absences" (3.11).
But hold on… Rather than feeling awesome about his accomplishments, Mitch says that he is "buried" (3.12) in them. Buried doesn't sound good, right?
Sometimes he thinks about his old professor who taught him some vague life lessons, but he shoves these thoughts aside.