|Our carts are ready for us to tee off|
My three friends, myself, and our husbands had just finished the "nine-ing" and now we were dining. For any of you who don't know much about golf, 9 'n Dine is where you play nine holes of golf and then eat after. It's something my friends and I do weekly, usually early on Friday evenings during the nicer months of the year. Quite often we'll have our first game in March or April and the last one by early October. We are what you might describe as "fair weather golfers" :-)
Every now and then we'll ask our husbands to join us, sometimes on special occasions like the Easter weekend or someone's birthday. But we don't actually golf with our husbands during those rounds...we keep our usual foursome and they golf with each other. Believe me, it's better that way.
So the other night when one of my friend's husband asked her what was the best part of her game that night, she said "Being with my friends." She might have been joking because she didn't think she had a great game, but she was also speaking the truth. Sure, we want to play well. But a big part of it is the social aspect. And the other truth is, we are nothing but supportive of each other when we get out there.
"Wow! Well done!"
When we flub a shot, which is often enough, we laugh at ourselves. We never tell each other how to do it better. I don't even keep score, although a couple of the ladies do. Sometimes I will count the shots in my head if I think I've done well on a hole, but the rest of it isn't important. I know, I know, I know. Some of you will think "Why bother playing if you don't keep score?" I'll probably never be able to explain it to you.
We talk, and we laugh. A lot. The guys are quieter and just slightly more competitive. That's all I'm saying.
The photo to the left is the approach to the 2nd hole at Cordova Bay Golf Course. Which is the other reason why I love it so much. It's beautiful out there. To the left under that grove of trees, are the goats. Yes, they have goats. My only hope is that they don't call out when I flub my shot. "Baaaaaa(d)!!!"
I have favourite things about each hole. I won't bore you with all of them. But, for instance, the 7th hole has a beautiful little pond where you'll always see lots of ducks, and up above, a huge tree where you can often find an eagle or two, as you see in this pic. The pond is also what we refer to as a "ball magnet". I have, in fact, donated many balls to that pond.
|Keeping an eagle eye out.|
Along with the eagles, the course is home to plenty of deer, lots of ducks, robins, red-winged blackbirds, the occasional Great Blue Heron, even owls, although I've never actually seen one. But I do hear an owl quite often as I'm teeing off on the 8th hole. It's a very comforting sound to me. Cordova Bay Golf boasts 75 species of birds and they are a certified Audubon Sanctuary, protecting the environment as well as preserving the game of golf.
|Cordova Bay Golf is a certified Audubon Sanctuary|
On certain holes, especially the first hole here on the left, when you look out past the trees to the east, you can see Mount Baker in all her glory, glistening white in the late afternoon sun. At Cordova Bay, they grow a lot of their own vegetables in big fields or small plots, and still manage to keep the deer from nibbling on them. Not an easy feat.
The gardens are immaculately kept with lots of native species, and the staff are a lot of fun. I sound like a bloody commercial! But I love the place...we all do.
|The 5th hole ladies' tee|
Golf courses are becoming fewer and further between these days here where I live. At least two local 9 hole courses that we have often played, have shut down in the last couple of years. From what I have researched, golf has always been a waxing or waning thing, so it's not the end yet. And although the primary clientele appear to be middle-aged and older, I do often see young people at the course too, so that's a positive sign. I convinced one of my daughters to take it up and she did for a short while. I hope she'll play again some day, maybe when she finds other people her age who like golf.
I remember seeing an elderly gentleman once playing the course with only one arm. He used an electric cart, and he could hit a tee shot straighter and further than I could ever hope to. With one arm.
I vow to keep playing golf with my friends until, for whatever reason, I can't anymore.
Oh, and my friend Crystal would remind me about the glass of wine at the end. That's the other reason I love golf. Because there's wine at the end.