Monday 4 March 2013

Golf Balls

Yesterday afternoon, my mother was busy with her nap, so I decided to take advantage of the sunshine outside, and walk down the road to say hello to my aunt and uncle. As I walked along, my eyes automatically scanned the side of the road for golf balls. Every time I walk this stretch of Darmstadt Road, nature dictates that find a golf ball or two. The photo confirms that natural law remains absolute.

My family's property in Evansville is adjacent to a golf course. As a result, golf balls seem to have always been a part of our lives. We would automatically find errant balls, half buried in the grass or leaves, as we walked through our fields or forests.

All during my father's retirement, he took advantage of this situation, generating extra cash by collecting, cleaning, and selling used golf balls. Every morning, he would rise just before dawn, put on his outside gear, then head over to the wooded and weeded outlying areas of the golf course, and make his rounds. I was always amazed at how many he would bring home. After cleaning them, he would sort and package them in egg cartons, ready for the consumer.

My father's prowess was such an established part of our family lore, that my brother Rob, in a creative writing class, wrote a story, in which my father really had a mystical god-given gift, in which golf balls just appeared magically around any area in which he stood.

While my father was alive, and in good health, when I returned to Evansville for a visit, I was often asked to join him in his early morning forays into the mists to look for golf balls. I sadly recall that I always passed on the search, because it seemed too much of an abrupt effort to interrupt my early morning sleep. Now, that he is gone, I feel a regret in my heart, at my laziness, and I think of my father, every time I see a golf ball half hidden in the weeds.

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