Hi- allow me to introduce myself.

I am a golf course.

That little slice of heaven you trekked around when you were a youngster. You were captivated by my charm and challenge.

Initially my appearance changed solely with the seasons.

Sometimes I was green when the skies opened up and gave me the nourishment to bloom.

Sometimes I was brown when the summer heat parched my roots and made me thirsty.

I was your friend and sometimes your foe, but we both held no grudges.

I was that contouring, doglegging, hazard abound landscape that tested your physical and mental abilities on a daily basis.

I now sit here partly abandoned and extremely worried I became not enough for you.

One day you were using me frequently- walking along my fairways in search of your perfect and not so perfect shots & the next day you were visiting me only occassionally.

We both aged. Our appearance and our outlooks changed.

Our love affair faded and somehow I become of less interest to you. I was shattered.

After providing so many friendships and life lessons I was a little shook up that I was now an acquaintance and not your fondest past time.

What happened? What did I do so wrong to be pushed aside with such abandonment and disdain?

 

My heart was broken. I always looked forward to our meetings.

You would bring your carry bag of clubs onto my opening tee and lay them down gently on my apron. I could see your eyes summarizing what this opening shot offered you.

I was seducing you into seeing me for who I truly was.

A beauty if you could select wisely and swing fluently.

A beast if you became reckless and tried to play beyond your capabilities.

I was offering you a tapestry to bring your mind and body into harmony and you my friend were always up to the challenge.

That of course all changed....and what a sad day that was. I still feel tears well up in my eyes when I reminicse- (probably the wrong choice of word)- when I look back at that fateful day.

Imagine my dismay when you lay your bag down on my imperfect patch on that same first tee and I felt my grass coverings go cold with the touch of metal.

My friends- the persimmon trees- your friends for so long- were replaced with a giant head of titanium and graphite for it's stalk. 

The coldness of their contact on my skin - was like a dagger through my heart.

I knew right then I would have to change to have any chance of maintaining our friendship.

My opening hole , while not long, had always been enough for you. It asked questions of you. You were- for the most part- up to the challenge.

You always selected the red route- the way I was designed to be approached.

You saw the bait but would always play smart, hitting that long iron or fairway wood- (WOOD!!!! Damn you!!!)- down the left side of the fairway.

Just the right club to stop short of the fairway bunker, my father- my architect- had so perfectly framed the corner of my dogleg with all those years ago.

Just the right club to be far enough back from the pines that framed my right side, so you could still have room to loft the ball up and over their outstretched needles and make the green without disturbance.

Just the right club to catch the camber of my gentle left to right slope to feed your balata down into the middle of my fairway adjacent to the 150 yard marker.

Remember that 150 marker?

The one right there in the middle of the fairway, sitting at the perfect yardage for your eight iron approach from the slight sidehill lie that you always felt comfortable with.

The 150 yard eight iron approach with the gentle fade you used to stick tight to the hole.

Then you would salute and mouth off to me when you defeated the dragon I had laid out for you in my art and design.

Now you are- as the revered Bobby Jones would say- "playing a game I am not familiar with"

Now I see it... I feel the extra long tee penetrate my soil much more gently than previous days- teeing the ball up so high you won't even brush my surface when you swing.

Now I see it.... The oversized metal head- that could feed stations to the cable televison inside our clubhouse.

Now I feel it...the pain. The agony of defeat.

You are going to take the blue line route to the destination.

Go ahead- say it.... I know you are. You can't hurt me anymore

You are going to dismiss my contours.

You are going to avoid my white face bunker that used to laugh at you from the tee- now you don't even see it.

That bunker recently admitted his own lonely existance to me not so long ago also. He feels betrayed too that his prescence is no longer appreciated or acknowledged.

The beautiful pines on the corner of my dogleg are now an aiming point rather than an obstruction. And yes!!! They are pissed off too!!!!

I'm hurt.

Not only do I feel the coldness of the metal, I see the shiny new box of white missiles you brought from your side zipper of your bag.

I see the dimples. I see the seam. I see the way they fly farther and straighter.

I see the writing on my wall.

I have no option now but to prepare for a facelift. I had assumed facelifts were only for older people desperately trying to hang onto their youth, but here I am about to go under the knife.

I hear them in the distance.

The reverbarating hummm of the bobcats and the tillers. Warming up their engines. Ready to rip my soul out and bring me back unrecognizable.

Ready to revamp my appearance.

Ready to move my insides around like I am on an operating table.

I still enjoy your company- even if you have no regard for mine any longer.

I will miss you.

I will miss the times we laughed and shared a common theme of being happy with who we were.

I will be back- possibly bigger but certainly not better.

I wish it could have been about just you and me but technology determined our fate.

I hope I can still challenge you when I reappear.

I will look different. We will all look and act different. The game through both our eyes will be different.

It was the best of times. It was the worst of times...........