Oblonsky pays Levin an unexpected visit at his estate, and Levin is pleased to see him. Oblonsky has arrived to do some shooting, see Levin, and sell a forest. Levin tells Oblonsky about his book on farming and deliberately tries not to ask about Kitty directly. Oblonsky essentially admits to continued cheating on his wife, comparing his actions to desiring sweet rolls as well as bread.
Levin is happy to see Oblonsky, and he wants to ask for news of Kitty but is ashamed to do so directly. Although Levin and Oblonsky are friends, they lead very different lives: Oblonsky visits the country, but his natural habitat is the city, and the opposite is true for Levin.