It was raining a couple of Fridays ago when my friends and I met at Cordova Bay Golf Course.
“Should we do it?” one friend asked.
“I think we should.”
“But I don’t know.”
It went on like that for about 20 minutes before we finally came to our conclusion.
“Let’s do it!”
A little rain isn’t bad. It’s when the clouds open up and dump everything they have on you that it gets miserable. Some golfers come prepared with those massive umbrellas that attach to their carts and cover pretty much everything.
The best I can do is a rain jacket with a hood. It works well enough. My shoes aren’t waterproof though. So that usually means a soaker. But I can live with a little of that. In fact, I can put up with a lot when it comes to playing golf. I just love being out there. And that’s especially true this year.
Lately, for me, golf has been as close to normal as life can be. When you’re out on the fairway, it’s just you and your friends (at a healthy distance, of course) and that long stretch of green stuff in front of you. Occasionally, there’ll be a deer and its fawn or a couple of eagles (the kind with feathers…little golf joke there) and a rabbit or two. Cordova Bay Golf, where we play, is a certified Audubon Sanctuary, along with a number of other golf courses in our province.
Oh, and then there’s the part about trying to get that little white ball into a hole far, far away. We’ll get back to that.
In the last few years, a lot of local golf courses have been shutting down as interest in golf has been dwindling.
And then the virus showed up. Many businesses have been adversely affected, of course. Gyms and dance studios and indoor sports businesses are struggling or shutting for good in some cases. What caught my eye while we were playing a few weeks back, though, was a group of kids on the 2nd hole. Two of them were probably teenagers, the other two were younger. They were loud and goofy, and they probably didn’t know much golf etiquette, but I was delighted to see them. Because for any sport or activity to continue, it needs young blood.
As it turns out, golf and tennis have both had a resurgence in the last few months because they are outdoor activities that don’t really require any physical contact. Not only that, but courses have put a few protocols in place so you don’t have to touch anything that anyone else has touched. Like the flags in the holes or the rakes in the sand traps. For those of you who don’t know anything about golf, sand traps, also called bunkers, are those pools of sand, usually strategically placed at or near the green where the hole is. Balls have a way of landing in bunkers often. And they’re not easy to hit out of.
These days, you don’t have to rake up after yourself if your ball ends up in a bunker and you make a mess in the sand. Which is great. You see, normally, I have to rake often.
It’s much more difficult to book a tee time lately, and we often have to book two weeks in advance to get the time slot we want. I’ve also noticed the tennis courts a few blocks away from where I live are always busy. Every day of the week.
Our great fortune is that these two activities can be enjoyed year-round because of our mild weather here on the west coast. Well, if it weren’t for that darned rain.
And so we slopped up to the first hole and took turns teeing off. The rain started coming down just a little harder, so I pulled up my hood as I walked over to the tee.
I set the ball up. Drip, drip, drip. All was silent except for the sound of the rain spattering on my jacket. I took a deep breath, swung the club back, and gave the ball a good whack. It disappeared behind a mound in the trees somewhere. Oh well.
As we walked up the fairway, the water started seeping into my shoes and sprinkling on my eyeglasses.
I smiled. Isn’t life great?
Irene Jackson is a guitar teacher, musician and general writer “wanna-be” living in the beautiful city of Victoria, B.C. Her website is at irenejackson.com.
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