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Dear Abby 2/14

Unexpected kindness helps grandmother out of a jam

DEAR ABBY: I took my grandsons to see a movie. They were looking forward to our outing all week. As we stood in line to buy tickets, I realized I had only a $20 bill in my wallet.
    We had planned to lunch on hot dogs and drinks in the theater, but I knew I wouldn't have enough cash. I told my grandchildren we had a problem — I was short of money — but I figured I could write a check.
    The 7-year-old said, "No, MeeMaw! The sign says cash only." I replied, "That's OK because it doesn't cost much for kids." He piped up again, "MeeMaw, the sign says $4 for children."
    As the line to the cashier grew shorter, we decided that we'd buy only one hot dog and one drink, and we'd share.
    Unbeknownst to me, a young lady standing in front of us overheard our conversation. When she reached the cashier, she purchased her tickets, then turned to me and handed me three tickets to see our movie. I was shocked and delighted and so were the boys. I tried to thank her, but she was gone in a flash.
    Abby, I will never forget that dear girl's kindness and neither will the boys. It happened more than a year ago, but I still think of it to this day and have tried to pass her generous act forward. I hope she sees this letter so she will know what an impact her spontaneous act of kindness had on us. — GRATEFUL MEEMAW IN AUSTIN, TEXAS
    DEAR MEEMAW: So do I. Acts of kindness are like pebbles tossed into a reflecting pool. The ripples radiate outward long after the deed is done.
    DEAR ABBY: I know you sometimes enjoy sharing amusing incidents with your readers. Years ago, we lived in a friendly community of row houses with attached garages. I was attending college at the time, and usually returned home around midnight.
    My best pal, my cat Peg, would wait for me on top of the garage. When I left the garage, Peg would jump on my shoulders and remain there for several hours after I went inside to study.
    One night I was delayed getting home. My next-door neighbor, an alcoholic, came home from a party stewed to the gills around the time I usually got there. There were no lights in the garage, and it was very dark.
    Assuming it was me, Peg jumped on his shoulders as he left the garage. My neighbor screamed and yelled. The neighbors came out to see what was going on. The police arrived. Hysteria ensued.
    The next day the morning paper had the headline, "Wild Animal Escapes From Zoo." -- MORRIS W. IN ARIZONA
    DEAR MORRIS: And I know which one. It was one of their pink elephants.
    DEAR ABBY: Please help me. My lover and I have been disagreeing lately and are considering couples counseling. However, he keeps insisting that we see the marriage counselor he and his wife are currently seeing.
    I want to make this relationship work, but I think it's inappropriate to receive counseling from the same one that they are currently seeing. What do you think? — NEEDS THERAPY IN TEXAS
    DEAR NEEDS THERAPY: I think you should definitely have some sessions with the therapist who is counseling your lover and his wife. They could prove enlightening. I'm willing to bet the farm that the same issues that have caused him to cheat on her are the ones at the root of your problems with him. And I'm not at all sure that "making this relationship work" would ultimately be in your best interests.

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