My dad first took my little brother, Roger, and me golfing when I was 12 and Roger was 9. Roger ended up taking second place in the state golf tournament when he was in high school. He routinely shot in the low 70s—and sometimes even lower. I, on the other hand, did not.
I vividly recall playing 9 holes with dad after he finished work and before the sun went down. Roger and I would argue, fight, and tease each other on holes 1 and 2. When we reached the tee box for hole 3, which was a par 3 heading toward the clubhouse, dad would threaten that if we didn’t stop fighting we’d get in the car and go home after the third hole. I’d look at Roger, and he’d look at me, and we’d agree to knock it off because we really wanted to play the last 6 holes with our dad.
We continued to play golf with my dad even into his late 70s. That’s the great thing about golf—you can play it late into your life. It’s pretty hard to put together a baseball game when you’re in your 80s (actually, you don’t feel like it anyway). And with golf, you visit as you walk or ride in a car between shots.
In this regard, I recently heard an interview with Jack Nicklaus, the greatest golfer of all time, which I will paraphrase. David Feherty, who is really funny, conducted the interview. Jack was 78 years old at the time. David asked Jack if he still played much golf. Jack said he played 9 holes every day. David said, “doesn’t your body hurt, at your age, after you swing the club for 9 holes every day.” Jack said, “I’m 78 years old; my body hurts all the time no matter what I do or don’t do, so I might as well enjoy playing golf!” I agree! I’m 66, and my body hurts a lot of the time and a little more after I play golf, but it’s totally worth it.
We loved sharing a GoodGrandma Spotlight on Grandma Connie, who took up golf to be with her grandsons. Playing golf was a way to spend time with them even though, in the beginning, she didn’t care much for the game. Then one day, Grandma Connie witnessed a player hit a hole in one at a PGA tournament. She was hooked!
When you think of sports, there are not too many ball sports a grandparent can do with their grandchild. It’s kind of unfeasible to play baseball, football, or basketball game considering the age difference. But a grandparent can play golf with a grandchild—and not only that, have a great talk together at the same time.
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