Tuesday, September 30, 2008

A Weekend With My Grandparents...And a Few Pros.

I started my vacation last week and decided to spend some time out in Monterey, CA with my grandparents. I left Friday morning and flew to San Francisco, CA and was then going to drive down to my grandparents house (which is about 2 hours south of there). I arrived in San Francisco just before noon and decided to take my time getting down to Monterey. I got to San Jose, CA and veered off onto some really cool mountain road with lots of twists and turns, which is something I rather enjoy. I decided to see how well my rental car could keep up so let's just say, I was exceeding the speed limit.

I came around a corner and coming head on was one of California's finest Highway Patrolman. I knew I was way over the posted limit and the CHP quickly turned on his flashing lights and made a U-turn to come get me. I thought to myself, "I can either floor it and head for the hills, or just pull over". I've watched enough COPS episodes to know that they usually always catch up with people, and since I didn't want to be on the receiving end of a taser, I decided to pull over. I was actually pulled over before he was completely turned around. I thought that would earn some brownie points, you will soon find out, it didn't.

He came up to the car and asked for my license and registration and very nicely explained why he pulled me over. He clocked me at 53 MPH in a 35 MPH zone. I was going to explain that I'm dyslexic and am easily confused by numbers. He didn't look like the kind of guy who liked to joke around though, so I didn't mention it. He asked me why I was going so fast. Again, I wanted to tell him, "Because this is one of the coolest roads I've ever been on, and I wanted to enjoy it to it's fullest, and you're not helping." I didn't think that would go over very well so I stuck with, "I don't know." Without much discussion, he walked back to his car and wrote me a citation. Since I haven't pleaded guilty to it yet, I can use the line that the media always uses; "Paul was allegedly going 53 MPH in a 35 MPH zone." I can tell you though, I'm probably not going to fly out to California to go to court, so you can take the word "allegedly" out. Minnesota doesn't have traffic school but California does, I wonder if I can go to traffic school in California so it doesn't go on my record?

I continued my drive down this very cool road at a pace my grandma would get frustrated with, and after a quick stop for lunch in Santa Cruz, headed down the Pacific Coast Highway to my grandparents. I've always wanted to learn how to play golf and I thought since I was in the golf capitol of the world, maybe I could take a few lessons. My grandparents set some lessons up with one of the golf pros at their country club.

By the way, why do they call golf instructors "Pros"? Anyone that has a real job is probably considered a professional but that's not their title. When you ask a doctor what he does, he will probably say, "I'm an orthopedic surgeon" or "I'm a general practitioner." He's not going to say, "I'm a professional", even though he very much is a professional at what he does, that's not his title. For some reason though, a golf instructor can get away with a one word answer to what they do for a living, "I'm a pro."

Saturday morning I met one of the golf "pros" named Ryan. He was the definition of his title. He gave me some great pointers on how to swing the club with the hope that the ball will eventually go straight. When I say he gave me "some pointers", I really mean a laundry list of things to do. He didn't stop talking for 35 minutes! I literally took two pages of notes, just on how to swing the club! He did a great job (considering who he was working with) and that afternoon my grandpa and I went out to the range to hit some balls. I'm not sure if anyone has ever said this before but I'll go ahead and say it, golf is a very frustrating sport, and the more frustrated you get, the worse you hit. Like anything though, with a little effort and a lot of practice, I'll be playing with Tiger before I know it. Well, right now my goal is just to be able to play 18 holes.....period.

I took another lesson the next morning which had a lot less talking and was more about fine tuning my swing. I went out again and hit some balls that afternoon and again the next day. My grandparents have both been playing golf for more than 60 years so I think they were excited to see me finally get into it.

I love vacations and this weekend in Monterey was great! I got to spend some time in one of the most beautiful spots in the world with people I love, learning a game, that maybe someday I'll love.


Nancy Holte said...

I think that a "Pro" would generally refer to himself as a
"golf pro" not just a pro. I mean, that would leave things WIDE open for what you actually do. Good job on the golf lessons. I'm sure you'll be great. Tiger should be getting nervous.

Anonymous said...

So you are taking comments now? I'm proud of you! Maybe you can show me how to swing a golf club?!