Golf and Birthdays

June 20, 2016

Okay, if you don’t love golf (which I wouldn’t understand at all), just scroll down to the sunset and barbeque shots. No hard feelings.

Peter’s golf obsessed. This made gift-giving pretty easy this birthday and graduation season. Clubs, clothing, shoes, golf bag, paraphernalia, lessons… and a round or two at a chichi Hawaiian golf course.

In West Maui, that would be the Ka’anapali golf resort. I made reservations a few weeks ago and booked a 7:15 round at the Kai course, their slightly less-fancy option.

Nothing motivates Peter to get up early quite like a round of golf (apparently). I showed up at his snazzy resort at 6:00am sharp and he was all set. Here’s his lobby:


Snazzy lobbies and fancy-schmancy golf. We are not in Davis anymore.

The first thing we learned is that kids under 18 play free. So the first order of business was processing a big fat refund. They insisted. We rented clubs, bought balls and gloves, and of course had a cart, so probably came close spending right through what we’d saved on greens fees. But still.

Peter’s the driver:


Don’t read anything into that expression. His thrill level remained high throughout.

Swings and shots on the day:

Tee off….


Good out…




More concentration…


A very nice putt, but it missed!


THIS one did not… first birdie putt ever…


How great is that? Birthday round, Hawaiian course, putting for birdie, and actually making it–his first. Thank you golf gods, that was so generous of you.

And here’s his mama, looking all spiffy, don’t you think?

IMG_3584 (1)

Only wished I’d not forgotten the giant black visor I’d gotten for the occasion.

I was so rusty. My best 10 shots were the ten I hit on the driving range–excellent each and every one. I was so hopeful. On the course, I had some good ones, but mostly I duffed, and hooked, and chunked, and sliced my way to an uncountable total.. too many mulligans to qualify as anything close to a legitimate round. After the first round of eighteen, I was stiffening up, so sat out most of the second eighteen (oh yeah, a story there.. see below)… but damn, it was fun. I am so, SO going to go out and play golf with Peter again.

Golf, it turns out, is a perfect activity if you’re the mom of a not very talkative teen. You can focus on the activity, and get quite a bit of chatting in between holes. Most of that chatting is golf related, but it still qualifies as quality time. He’s engaged, delighted to be with you. It’s the perfect grownup implementation of parallel play… everyone’s happy. I got to see Peter as I’ve never seen him. It’s not like I haven’t watched his every move in every baseball game he’s ever played (damn near, anyway), or watched his development with intense fascination from the time he was zero years old, but this is Peter playing golf. That’s new. And fascinating. He’s got moves. Like the hint of a swagger as he makes a put, or his strut to the tee. The way he uses the steering wheel of the golf cart to land him in the driver’s seat or the way he flips,  then catches, his ball out of the cup.  That kind of stuff. Even the way he interacted with the starter… there was a knowing, a little bit of a confident familiarity. It was all a bit of a glimpse at an adult Peter. And he is completely willing to let me into this new world of his.

I have great optimism for future rounds in lots of new places. Like Torrey Pines in La Jolla.

Anyway… ahem. Back to Hawaii..

Because I usta be a pretty good golfer, and because I’m so rusty right now, I’m a bit fascinated by this series. Again, skip ahead to the sunset and bbq shots if you’re really getting tired of golf talk.   These are screen shots of video Peter took and I love them!

The address:

Screen Shot 2016-06-29 at 5.51.39 PM

The backswing:

Screen Shot 2016-06-29 at 5.52.47 PM

(Wish that elbow were straighter.)

The downswing:

Screen Shot 2016-06-29 at 5.56.55 PM

(Ackkk, again with the elbow!)

The stroke:

Screen Shot 2016-06-29 at 5.53.29 PM

(Elbow, elbow, elbow!)

The follow through:

Screen Shot 2016-06-29 at 5.54.27 PM

(Wish that left elbow was down a bit. And wow, but I lifted my head.)

The walk-off (probably disgusted):

Screen Shot 2016-06-29 at 5.55.57 PM

But really… how fun is that!!

This is a blurry photo, but I like it… Peter in his new element:


Oh, and the double round thing: We learned upon signing in that if you paid for a full round of golf on the Kai course, and maybe because of the season (?), you were allowed to play a full second round on the Royal course–their flagship, signature course–for a greatly reduced fee ($39 each). A deal that, after some pleading on Peter’s part, but not much, we really couldn’t pass up.

So we did. Thirty six holes of Hawaiian golf, something like eight one-on-one hours tooling around a golf course by the ocean, with my kiddo. Heaven.


Switching gears.

Darlene and I had decided to invite the whole bunch to our condo for a barbeque on Monday night. A gesture of thanks to the group, but mostly a birthday party for Peter, if four days early.

I of course was off flitting around a golf course while a lot of the set up needed to be done, but we’d purchased nearly everything the day before and had strategized our plans for the party already… so it was just a matter of pulling it all together and there was plenty of time for me to be a part of that before folks showed up. Darlene did a lot of prep work, though, so I was very grateful!

We assembled down by the grills, on the grassy area above the rocks.  A gorgeous spot. The boys showed up in their finest Hawaiian duds (pictured: Kelsey, Peter, Jordon, Reed and Daniel):


Fish was grilled, Mai Tais consumed (Yali and Denise):


I have not a single picture of all five boys looking good, but I have this one of each looking (unintentionally) goofy (Daniel, Peter, Jordon, Reed and Jacob):


A permanent resident of the complex takes it upon himself to carry on the tradition of sounding the conch at sunset. He said he felt like it was his responsibility (and, in fact, Kuleana–the name of our complex–means responsibility), and does it nightly. He hung around a little while and shared stories. Nice guy.


Who wouldn’t want to revere this?


After sunset, we headed back up to our place for cake…Peter does the honors…


A close up:


Mahalo local bakery!


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