Monday, June 10, 2013

The Golf Gypsy: Turning Over a New Leaf

There are some pretty amazing women in the world, young and old, and I've been fortunate to meet so many of them.  One recently turned my head and made me think.

We had just completed a golf tournament called Triple Threat, which is fun partner event.  It is, also, quite a challenge since the teams play three different formats in 18 holes:  four-ball, scramble, and modified alternate shot.  My advice is to make sure you and your partner know how to laugh and make no apologizes for errant shots. My partner, Mary Lee Evans, and I were laughing and remarking about being tired and out of shape for golf this season.  Now usually words like that get many more commiserating comments from those around the table.

The four of us who played together that day are all "Seniors."  Mary Lee just celebrated her 72 birthday and is a passionate player of golf and life, so we both realize that age is just a number.  Natasha Fife played with a friend from Rolling Hills Golf Course, Betty Hall.  Betty doesn't hit the ball far, but she hits it straight and rolls putts like a hawk zooming down on its prey.  Noticing that we were all older than the young women at our table, Mary Lee turns and asks, "Betty how old are you?"

Betty just smiled and her eyes gleamed, "I'm 86."

Betty and Tash at Prairie Trails Golf course.

I'm thinking, she's 86 and still competes.  How exciting, she's like the little engine that could.  It's not just a story. It's for real.

Mary Lee continues, "How often do you play golf?"

Slowly, Betty tilts her head and looks around the table, "Well, I play on Tuesdays."  There was a long pause, giving me time to think.  That seems about right.  At that age I'd be happy to play once a week.   Betty continues, "Then I play every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday."

My mouth dropped open and Mary Lee nearly leaped out of her chair, restating incredulously, "You play three days in a row besides Tuesdays?  Don't you get tired?"

I'm enthralled because there are days I have no energy after one round of golf much less three days in a row.

Betty looks at us both and smiles, "No, I just play golf.  It's not hard."

Thank you Betty.  I drove home that day and for awhile I thought about being tired.  I've been tired since I started my career in teaching and raising kids, so it just seems normal at the end of the day to say, "I'm tired."   I've had time to think, "Am I really tired or is it just a bad habit I have."  After hearing Betty's words replayed, "I just play golf.  It's not hard."  I've turned over a new leaf, and a really heavy leaf--It is time to stop complaining about being tired.

Since I gave up Dr. Pepper this year I think I can refrain from old words and change bad habits.  Last week I played three days of tournament golf and then a fourth day with Jack.  Let's just say I slept well those nights.  In those four days, I spent time with friends and loved ones, felt the wind and rain in my face, relaxed watching dozens of goslings nestle with their mothers near the waters edge, looked for the red foxes, laughed at stories, watched the flowers grow, and discovered that I felt refreshed.  I just enjoyed life, it's not hard.


  1. Enjoyable read...nicely done. ss

  2. This was particularly inspiring. Thank you, Letty MM

  3. Boy, is this the truth! Betty sounds amazing. Not sure if I have ever met her or not. Probably have seen her at some tournaments. That's a way we do need to look at life. Great post. nv