Last week THE MR. and I headed to Florida to spend time with my son and his family. Our son and daughter-in-law had got the ‘Grands’, the ‘2 Kids’ and themselves tickets for Wednesday’s practice day at ‘The Players’ tournament. Way, way TOO MUCH FUN! We spent four hours there and saw a lot of the players playing/practicing putting and chatting with other pros. Me? Heck, I was thrilled to the MAX to see Henrik Stenson up close and personal.
In person he is one very tall-drink-of-water. THE MR. left me to my own devices at the practice green while he and the other four in our party watched threesomes’ and foursomes’ approach shots to the 2nd green, and then watched them tee off on 3. I joined them just in time to watch Marc Leishman come in to the 2nd green and then tee off. What a pleasant man he seems to be, making eye contact and smiling at people standing around the tee-box, and chatting with kids and others after he’d let loose with his driver. How thrilled I am to consider him our ‘home-town’ guy even though WE live in Norfolk. You will all be proud of me to know I didn’t bother him with any of my inane chatter. But, YEAH, I wanted to . . . I wanted to tell him “We love you in Norfolk!”
The course was much, much less congested than in 2018 when we were there for the Friday ‘moving-day’ round of the tournament. We could hardly move that day it was so crowded; but, this time on the Wednesday practice day, it was perfect: low 80’s, nice and sunny with plenty of move-around room. The course had installed over 150 of these big ‘Anti-bacterial Disposable Disinfectant Hand Gel’ stations all over the course. Everyone seemed to making good use of those dispensers.
I watched Justin Thomas, Stenson, Adam Scott and several other young guns for a long time just because I couldn’t make my legs move away. They totally fascinate me with their dedication to practice and I’m sure dealing with many sore backs as they putt and work on their chips. I mean, really – just how long can they stay bent over without big aches and pains setting in? We saw the ‘Rory’s’, McIlroy and Sabbatini, and at the same time I was watching Sabbinity trying to find a pen to autograph a kid’s hat, Notah Begay came flying down the cart path and had to work hard to keep from running over me. I watched B. DeChambeau miss getting on the green FOUR TIMES from a nasty little, grassy place just off the green. He was gracious though, and let some young girls do selfies with him. I have to say, I came away a bigger fan of Sabbatini than I’ve ever been. He was just very pleasant to the kids around him and smiling as he said a few words to several people. Keegan Bradley was much more easy to watch than he used to be when he use to fidget and back away way too much. Everyone seemed to be a great mood.
They probably had no idea what was going to await them that evening when they got back to their hotels and houses . . . First, no gallery would be allowed on the course for the 4-tournament days; and, then to end it all, a cancellation of the entire tournament. And, that was of course followed by the news of The Masters doing the same thing. I think that’s about the time (if we hadn’t already saw the writing on the wall after the NBA made their announcement) that golf was pretty much over for the spring, summer and maybe even this year.
It was that evening when I FINALLY took the shit-bird called the ‘coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)’ serious.
I had fun with my 10-year old granddaughter and 14-year old grandson, but even they were aware that things weren’t quite right. I spent a day shopping with them and another day just hanging around the house with them.
I hated to leave to come home this time more than ever before. Something nasty, big and disgustingly awful had crawled into my head – the thought that things in America have changed big time, and I didn’t know when I’d see my ‘little family’ again and if they’d all be safe and healthy. Or, even if me and THE MR. would be.
Scary times. But, I was glad to come back and find you all seemingly well and talking over the issues of the day. To everyone of you ladies and gentlemen on this board – be safe, hug your loved-ones close and consider watching less TV. I know I’m going to do my best to do that. If the freaking ‘coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)’ gets me I don’t want to take a chance on wasting any of my time on any bad, crazy news from the ‘djt’ White House.
I have a 9:30 a.m. tee-time with my lady friends tomorrow. I’ll be keeping it light and laughing about something as many times as possible . . .
These times demand nothing less.