Thursday, July 2, 2009
Riverside Golf Course, Hole One- From an elevated tee, it's basically a straight shot of some 453 yards, uphill at the end to a flat landing area, with some free standing trees and a large bunker to the left. A good chunk, of my high school summers, was spent here on this beautiful course caddying for the 'boys' and the rush of Canadian golfers in the dead of summer. Always in my back pocket, or lodged in my hands, while in the caddy shack or somewhere among the 18 fairways, was one of my 'books of summer'... of my high school summer reading list. The Yearling, Shane, The Silent Spring, Huckleberry Finn, Kidnapped, Father Damian the Leper were but a few on the list at one time or another. Four summers, four different lists of book to complete, with multiple choice tests looming in September when we returned to classes. As I recall, we had to pick 8 books out of a list of 15. Leo, working at the Fish Factory, and Eddie, making his money at Hillman Electric, never were faced with such dilemmas during their school vacations! My brother and I were usually at the course between 6-7 AM, and sometimes were lucky to 'have a bag' by noon. So that afforded me lots of time to get lost in a book and knock off some chapters. Now, there were three big pastimes for caddies waiting to 'get the call' to the first tee, and they were curling up and sleeping, smoking endless cigarettes and playing poker for cash. Really, I've disliked all three most of my life, except for maybe that 'Old Gold' summer in the tree house behind the Esso station. Once on the first tee, there was little time for reading, maybe a page here, a page there, but it sure did make the down time whiz by. If you promise not to spread it around, I'll tell you a secret. I really enjoyed all those books and the places they took me, while I wasn't chasing those Titleists!