Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Day 2: Heather, and then Arthur Hills. Let’s have the rain hold off.

Off we head to breakfast at the lodge. With four people, it’s easier to get to and from places and not wait on anyone (but, rule is: we don’t wait). Same omelet guy is there and recognizes us. Guess after 10+ years we may look familiar (or he’s good at disguising that). Realize I don’t have any pictures of the dining room: big, dated but just what you would think of a dining room at a resort like Dirty Dancing…

Off we go to the least impressive driving range on our trip at the Heather. It’s up the ski range, but nothing special whatsoever (except now they have Boyne tees so things must be better economically in Michigan). I’m driving Pete. Paul, Tom. They let us off early. There is a group ahead of us of guys who do an annual golf trip and this year is Boyne. They even have a trophy. As we’re getting ready to tee off on 1, the starter tells us about the weather (we can kind of see and hear it, but are trying to ignore the inevitable) coming in and if we hear something to go to the cart shed.

Paul and I are partners the first 6. We tie the first hole (but I have a sandie) and then they blow the horn. We make it to the shed just in time. A guy in the groups ahead had a hole-in-one on 6 so he’s now at the beer tent buying (probably not a great time to get a hole in one when there is a weather delay). These guys are from all over the country (one of them is ESPN SportCenter’s Stan Verrett - OK, I watch Sportscenter, but not that much so I've heard the name, but not enough to be able to point him out. Golf Channel, yes) – Charlotte, Atlanta, East Coast, West Coast. They are only playing Bay Harbor and Heather (wow, only two rounds in Michigan. who could do that????). Next year is San Diego. Pretty cool.
my home office

yes, we will play golf in the rain, says Tom.

Finally, they let us off again. I get another sandie on 2 and Paul and I win the hole. Tom gets a sandie on 3. I get a stroke on a par 3 on 4 and get the greenie and win the hole. We’re pretty trashy. The clouds keep rolling in and the weather doesn’t look great for the day (only bad day that we’ve seen). Heather is a great course to play in the morning and you can remember holes (e.g. 5, worst ball) on Big Break Michigan. So, Pete and I are ahead in our robin, heading into 9. Both are in good shape… and then horn blows. We stick tees in the ground and then we hightail it, just in time, to the cart barn. And the skies open up again. The guys in the group ahead, most of them bail because they have flights to catch. What a way to end a golf trip. We stick around and have a couple of beers and wait and see.

Finally, we bail as well to have lunch at the club and try and see about playing Arthur Hills that afternoon. Not looking good. But, what else will we do. Have lunch and wait. Then decide to check out the pro shop and decide. Pete’s all for quitting and taking a nap. Tom and I are for playing because we don’t know what else we’d do. Paul is whatever we decide. So, we decide to go for it and get geared up. But, no “real” game. It’s a two man scramble – me and Tom vs. Pete and Paul. If you’re going to play in the rain and sloppy conditions, good to have a partner. Off we go. And, for the most part, it’s OK. Then gets a bit worse. The course marshal tells us to come in if we see lightening. And to watch out for 13 (“The grounds crew don’t like to go to the tee boxes on 13 if it’s storming…”). Tom and I win the front nine. And head into the back nine with a lead. And then the marshal comes and says it’s cart path only. If you know Arthur Hills, it is NOT a cart path only friendly course if you have a cart. But, go on we do, wishing we had loaded up with beer before we left because there is no cart girl and the shack isn’t very convenient.

Finally, Ka-boom and flash and we hightail it off the course. So, 24 holes we made it through on what could have been a wash out. Back to the place to take apart our bags and dry out our gear before we headed to the grocery store (IGA, pretty quaint, in Harbor Springs – it closes on Sundays at 6:30 pmbecause we were the last ones there – they do have Better Made Butter Braided Pretzels). Then, dinner. Tom and I are gunning for Kilwins for our first ice cream of the trip, but we have dinner at the bar on the corner in downtown Harbor Springs (gets pretty packed in on a Sunday – think the grill closes at 7:30 pm on Sundays). Everything closes down early in Michigan.

Back to the place and I head out. Tomorrow is the Mountain – Alpine and Monument. Weather is supposed to be nice. Finally, two rounds of golf.

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