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I SHALL never forget a lesson I learned from my mother not long ago while we were driving on a rainy day. It was typical rush-hour traffic madness - with the added irritation of a downpour.

I had asked my mother to accompany me to do some errands, when suddenly we were surrounded by hundreds of other cars.

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They went very slowly - and my patience went very fast!

I began to yell at the rain for being so wet, at the drivers for being so slow, at the roads for being so bumpy, and at the sky for being so pregnant.

My mother turned to me, placed her hand on mine, and peacefully - as if nothing I had yelled had registered with her - said:

``You know, one of my greatest fantasies was to own a car so that I could drive it in the rain. It's so romantic.''

Suddenly, as if by magic, the rain began to fall in silver harmony, the sky was covered by beautiful clouds, and the drivers looked human.

Ever since that incident, I look forward not only to driving in the rain, but to making sure I find some semblance of beauty in almost whatever life brings me daily. Norma Romano-Benner, McLean, Va.

Three-year-old Amy loved to receive tapes from me, her grandmother. They were my voice reading books.

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Through them, Amy and I kept acquainted while she grew up in Alaska and I was in California.

The voice would say, ``Now Amy, turn the page,'' and a short description of the page would be given to be sure Amy had the correct one.

One day, Amy's mother wrote to me and said that once in a while the child would call out, ``Grandmother, be still! I want to tell you something.''

Her mother tried to explain to her about the tape and the recorder - how it and not Grandmother turned on and off.

Finally, Amy was old enough to carry on a conversation with me on the telephone - and how we would laugh about her talking to a tape! Eugenia G. Jenkins, Citrus Heights, Calif.

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