Written by Ted Anderson. Insurance agent Ted W. Anderson worked in sales for half a century, has lived in Albany since 1993. He is president of Dover Lane Neighborhood Watch. Send email to him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Yes, I have been lucky, or fortunate, in my life and travels to play on a number of very good golf courses throughout the U.S.A. and I have a story connected to just about every one of them. These adventures, or misadventures, are often thought of on a day like today, Jan. 7, 2012 when it is 70 degrees instead of 30 degrees that it should be here in Albany, Ga. I thought that I would tell you about a few of those that you may find interesting.
To start with, I had the opportunity to play Spy Glass which is one of the Pebble Beach golf courses in California and I jumped at the chance even though it was rather pricy. It was a few years ago and even then, they were getting $150.00 a round! Believe me, I am not used to paying that kind of money to play golf! But what the heck, I figured that I might never get the chance again to play such a wonderful course. And I was right. I have never been close to Pebble Beach again and I have not even had the opportunity to even step on such a prestigious course. Let me tell you, if you haven’t ever played a tough course like Spy Glass, it lets you know just how good, or poor, you are at this game and makes you wonder how these pro golfer are able to not only play it well but to get fantastic scores on it. It was so darn beautiful that I could care less how well I played and it was terrible! I was in the sand or ice plant areas all the time and a number of my balls went into the Pacific Ocean. We had a 6:35 A.M. tee time and lucky to get it. The entire No. 1 fairway was covered in fog as we started out and I lost 5 balls going down it and never found a one. It was downhill after that all the way around the 18 holes.
Another Southern California course that I will always remember was Rancho Bernardo and how that I embarrassed myself on that course. I remember teeing off on No. 1 with who lot of people standing around anxiously waiting to get started. I stepped up to the tee and went through my usual routine before swinging at the ball. When I did, I took about an eight inch divot on this beautiful tee! Oh my God, I wanted to find some place to go and hide! Man, I hate to tee off with a whole lot of people watching me tee off!
I was in San Antonio, Texas calling on an old friend of mine who had a Bandag Inc. franchise, the company I was representing. He had just got word that he had cancer and he wasn’t interested in playing any golf at the time. I happened to have my wife, Barbara, and this trip with me and she is an avid golfer, as you know, if you know her. Anyway, we were at the Old Dominion course their and my friend, Ted Leijenwald, paid both of our green fees and cart fees and we played the course by ourselves. I don’t remember any problems on playing this course. I just mentioned it because it was so beautiful and possibly you were familiar with the course.
Barb and I both play a lot of golf and we moved to Albany, Ga. because we were looking for a place where we could play year around. A few years ago when I was playing quite a lot more than I am today at age 75, I was getting to the point where I thought my next step was to break 80. I was at Doublegate Country Club here in Albany and playing in some charity affair. I shot a 37 on the first nine and stopped at the restaurant for something to drink. I was certain that that was the day I would break 80 as I headed for the 10th hole and the back nine. Well, I promptly shot a 57 on that back nine to my great embarrassment. The Pro at Doublegate, Ed Everett, still doesn’t believe it! That is how crazy this game of golf really is!
One last adventure and I will bring this article to a close. This one is unbelievable……but true! Those of you who know me know that I have Crohn’s Disease which I was diagnosed with when I was 53 years old. I had it long before that but I didn’t know the symptoms and was never treated for it until I got to be 53. This disease is a problem with the immune system and causes you constantly to have a restroom within site. When I play golf, I always have the urge “to go” when I get the furthest distance from the Club House. One day when my wife and I were playing the Brickyard course in Americus, Ga., we were the furthest distance from the clubhouse and this situation came about. I told my wife to take the clubs she needed and to keep playing. I would run to the clubhouse and I would meet her at the next hole. I got into our golf cart and went like a bat out of hell towards the clubhouse.
On the way, I saw a Port-a-John so I stopped and decided to use it instead. I am sitting in it when I notice fire ants on my shoes and starting to crawl up my ankles. Then, I feel them where I was sitting! Oh my God, I was sitting in a large bunch of fire ants that where everywhere! All I could think of was what I had read recently in a golf magazine. The article stated that if you were bitten a large number of times, the stings could actually kill you. Anyone who has been bitten a few times on the ankles knows how painful just a few bites can be! I got the ants off of me but not before I was bitten at least in 50 places. Thank God that I wasn’t bitten in certain areas that you are thinking about right now. That could have been a real problem! We all laugh about this now but at the time it certainly was NOT funny.
Hope you enjoyed reading about some of my golf course experiences. I have more but this article is already too long per the publisher’s guidelines. If you have any true golf stories that you think I would be interested in, please send them to me.