Friday, April 8, 2011

April In Augusta

My life as an avid golfer started the summer of 1967, I was five years old and my parents told me that I wore the bottoms out of three golf bags that summer by dragging the bag behind me because I was too short and scrawny to hoist it on my shoulder. As a child I was obsessed with golf, not only with playing the game, but also with designing new courses on paper and in my mind. I spent hours on the golf course near my house playing the course from alternate angles, inventing my own tees and sometimes even using parts of three different fairways from different holes to "design" an impossible par-five 680 yard hole. I played imaginary rounds in all of the majors, but the major that I was always most smitten by was, The Masters.

While other boys back in the day had pictures of Farrah Fawcett and Wonder Woman plastered on their bedroom walls, I had the cover and photo expose from Golf World Magazine, "April in Augusta" hanging beside my bed.

There was just something about The Masters. Maybe it was the time of the year, spring a time for renewal, a re-birth of golf weather in North Central West Virginia after 5 months of Winter. Maybe it was the hype, or maybe the extra emphasis placed on the tournament by the television network.

At any rate, I didn't really spend a lot of my time watching golf on television, I would much rather be out playing my own game, but during The Masters, all of that changed. That's just how The Masters is, it captivates you.

My early interest in April in Augusta, probably in some way accounts for me living as an adult in vacation land, because I always wished as a child that I could live and play someplace like Augusta, some place with all of those pine trees and azaleas and lush green grass.

I still haven't had the opportunity to attend any of the events of The Masters, although living this close to Augusta here in Charleston, I know and talk to a lot of folks who attend the classic golf tournament.

For now I will have to rely upon living vicariously through them, I will have to continue to use my imagination that tomorrows round is being played on the hallowed grounds of Augusta National, and that my homemade pimento cheese sandwich is actually an Augusta National original. It's not as big of a stretch as it used to be, at least here I have the bermuda grass, the tall pine trees and accompanying pine straw and the azaleas. And that's just fine with me, after all, I've been doing it for years. Happy Friday wherever you may be.

NOTE: Thanks to my good friend Nathan who provided photos for todays blog post.

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