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by Abigail Van Buren

DEAR ABBY: A relative my husband and I had not seen or heard from for more than 17 years unexpectedly showed up at our door and stayed, uninvited, for five days!

Although she was neat, considerate, appreciative and generous, I was angry, frustrated and resentful of the intrusion. What is your opinion regarding this situation, and what would you have done under the same circumstances? -- SUSAN IN CALIFORNIA

DEAR SUSAN: If a relative -- or friend -- showed up at my door unexpectedly with luggage in hand, I would have taken him or her to dinner (or lunch, depending on the time of arrival) -- and then offered to make a reservation at a nearby motel or hotel.

DEAR ABBY: I saw the letter in your column concerning kissing with eyes open. Well, I kissed with my eyes open -- deliberately. Why? Because I was going with a woman so stunningly beautiful that I didn't want to waste any of her enchanting loveliness.

My standards in female beauty had always been so absurdly high that I knew I had a champagne appetite (what I desired in feminine looks) on a beer budget (what I had to offer). When she appeared on the scene, exceeding my wildest dreams, and went for me in a big way, the thrill of kissing the mouth in the middle of that divinely beautiful face would have been partially squandered had I not kept my eyes open.

I had to train myself to do it, but the practicing was plenty pleasant. Just sign me ... OLD JOHN IN GLENDALE

DEAR OLD JOHN: You are a true romantic. Thank you for including your full name and address, which I dare not disclose. Were I to do so, it would threaten your privacy and create a scene that would rival the Gold Rush of 1849.

DEAR ABBY: Please print my letter, as we will be going on vacation soon.

Every time my husband and I travel to another country such as Mexico, Jamaica or other Caribbean islands, we're asked to bring back duty-free alcohol. The people who make these requests are not good friends -- they are usually my husband's co-workers.

The U.S. government allows each person to return home with two bottles of liquor duty-free. We would like to be able to buy the quota for ourselves and our family, but my husband does not know how to refuse his colleagues.

Please help with a polite answer for these people when they ask. -- NO NAME OR CITY, PLEASE

DEAR NO NAME: Foreign travel by Americans has become so common that it really is an imposition for the traveler to be asked to lug liquor and other gifts home from abroad.

Your husband should smile and say, "Sorry, there is a limit of two bottles -- and those have been promised." Other items are also limited, so the same response should work for almost any request.

For Abby's favorite family recipes, send a long, self-addressed envelope, plus check or money order for $3.95 ($4.50 in Canada) to: Dear Abby, Cookbooklet No. 1, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, Ill. 61054-0447. (Postage is included.)

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