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Mom, you weren't as bad as I thought you'd be

Saturday I went on an adventure. I went golfing, so Chris, GOLF does not stand for Gentlemen Only Ladies Forbidden. I have been on the green before but it had been a long time since I swung a club. And when I did go it was for a very relaxed charity scramble, skill wasn't necessarily a prerequisite, as long as your pockets where open you could attend.

Mom and Dad have had a winter home here in the The Villages, Florida for almost 10 years and the year before that they rented. We have been coming down each winter for prolonged visits ever since. The guys always golfed as much as they could. I declined every invite. I don't really know how to golf, my skill is worse than sub-par so I didn't really enjoy it. I always said that golf just got in the way of a good walk. After we returned home from our last visit I said next time I would give it a try. I realized it was my only chance to get off the pavement and on the grass down here.

Stephen joined us Thursday for Christmas so Dad reserved a tee-time for Saturday. As we were getting ready to head out the door, Stephen, who had never remembered seeing me golf, said, "Well, at least you look the part." I thought that was cute because more than once I have said, "It's not how you play the game -hike-ski-or what other activity - it's how you look while you do the activity.

Out the door we went. We climbed into our golf carts and headed to the course. It was a beautiful day, not like the last several days that have been cold, damp, and rainy. We can't really complain too much since our friends in the north have been buried in snow, but non-the-less, the weather here has been unseasonable awful.

It is a little ironic. We drive the carts to the course, but then we park them and walk. That's were the fitness comes in. The guys pulled their clubs on these fancy wheel-thing-a-ma-jiggies. Dad offered me a wheeler, but I declined. The clubs I was borrowing where Mom's, a small set in a small lightweight bag, so I opted to carry them. I figured it was good training for hiking. When I lifted the clubs off the cart, the strap frayed almost completely from dry-wrought. I was rethinking my decision not to use a hand cart. Luckily, Bruce had his strap that he didn't need. I rigged up his to mine the best I could marry the mismatch pieces and we took our spot in line waiting for our turn.

Then we waited, and waited. And waited. The previous sentences reminded me of a line in my Happy Hiking book- hoping to be released on Amazon this week or next - where I tell about my having to wait for another hiker. I don't like waiting. But I didn't fret long, I caught myself in mid-thought of impatience and complaining while standing in line and realized, it really wasn't that bad. I was outside, it was nice, the company was great, and I was on grass. Maybe there was something to this golfing thing.

We were up. Dad and Stephen teed off first, followed by Dad on the next spot then it was my turn and I moved up to the women's tee. Oops, need to be PC, the forward most tee. The pressure was on. All three of the guys had a decent drive. I didn't even remember the last time I had even picked up a club. I didn't even go with them earlier that morning to the driving range to loosen up. There I was, at the start and there were several other golfers in line waiting for us to go so they could begin. The funny thing about me and golf is, I don't even know if I swing right-handed or if I am a south-paw.f

So, it really is an adventure to see me on the golf course. I am so bad I truly can't see a difference in my swing no matter which way I do it. In my much younger years playing softball, for a short time I could switch-hit but I predominantly swung righty. I am sure a good coach could clue me in on which would be my most skillful swing, but since I didn't have a coach, I chose to go lefty. I like to be different.

Trying to forget all eyes were on me, I placed my ball on the tee, took my stance like a pro, at least that's what I told myself, and swung. Whoooooosh --clinnnnnnk-------watch it go-------!!! I saw it sail, arcing high in the air right down the middle of the thoroughfare, landing on the green about ten yards from the pin. Then I opened my eyes as Stephen said, "Not to bad mom" as I spotted my bright pink ball actually only about half way to the green.

It was really fun to be out on the course with my hubby, our son and Dad. It was the first time I had been on a course not involved in a charity event. While those were fun and it was a great cause, this was much more peaceful.

When I was going to college and learning how to teach kids how to do skills, our instructors drilled into our heads that when creating lessons, we needed to design lessons that provided the most touches on the ball. So, I was a little confused when I was told I maxed out on "touches" per hole. What do you mean I can only have twice as many swings as the par. My thinking was I was getting more bang for my buck with each swing. Stephen kept the team score card but I kept my own with the actually number. Since no one was waiting behind us, I took as many swings as needed to sink my ball. Only once did I need to use the drop area. After losing 3 balls into the pond, I decided to quit and use the drop area. I never hit a sand pit and only one other time the guys told me I had to stop trying. With all that I shot a 56 for nine holes. Hey, stop laughing! I was happy with that all things considering.

While I don't think I will be playing in any PGA, I wouldn't mind adding golf to my activities. I would probably benefit from a lesson or two, or three, but even without a lesson I think I would enjoy this sport. That's what is so much fun about going on adventures, doing something different. You never know what you will like or dislike until you venture out and try something new.

Last night at dinner, Dad asked Stephen when he would like to go golfing again. Mom asked if I wanted to go again and I said sure if they guys didn't want to go alone for guy time. Stephen said something on the lines of "Mom, you weren't as bad as I thought you'd be."

We all laughed, and I said, "Thanks, I think." I chose to take it as a compliment. Just like I chose to see the good when we had to wait for our turn. It would have been easy get upset at that honest and cute remark by my son. But, I would have let my pride ruin the sincerity in the moment. So, go forth, and seek the good, even if it means you have to be humbled. It is so much more enjoyable.

Happy Hiking



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