Bob Kaster

Sam had hit a pretty decent shot off the fourth tee. His best shot of the day so far, giving him a good chance for a par on this tough 402-yard par-four hole. The challenge was that you couldn’t see the green from the tee box. It was uphill for the first one hundred and twenty-five yards, then the fairway sloped downward, and dog-legged left toward the green. So, from the tee box you couldn’t see the fairway beyond the crest. Sam, born and raised in Mount Shasta, was on spring break from his senior year at the University of Oregon. He had invited a couple of his college buddies to come home with him to enjoy the Siskiyou County mountains,

 and get in some golf. All three were good golfers. Sam knew the secrets of this course well and knew where he had to place his tee shot to get a good second straight shot at the green. Too far left would put him in the trees, where all he could do was to hit it back out onto the fairway, wasting a stroke. Too far right would take him away from the green, also costing a stroke. He was pleased with himself as he was addressing the ball and lining up his second shot, when he heard a noise behind him and immediately felt something hit the back of his head. The force wasn’t enough to hurt, but definitely caught his attention. He turned around and observed a pink golf ball bouncing away from him. The euphoria of his well-hit tee shot immediately turned to rage. He was hot. Some asshole had hit into him! He was fighting mad.

He picked up the pink golf ball,

 and thought about teeing it up right there and hitting it back up the hill in the direction it had come. He didn’t do that, though, and started walking back up the hill. He would tell the asshole what he thought! As he stormed up the hill, a golf cart appeared above him, headed in his direction. It had a single occupant. She had a blond ponytail which bounced back and forth with the movement of the cart. She wore a baseball cap, a polo shirt, and shorts which disclosed very nice suntanned legs. As she pulled up close to him, she said, “I’m so sorry. I thought you were farther down the hill. Did you see my ball?”

Sam still had the pink ball in his hand, “You mean this one?” he asked, holding it up. There was some hostility in his voice, but his anger was dissipating. He wasn’t sure why.  “You hit me.”

She stopped her cart right in front of him and quickly climbed out. “Oh, I’m so sorry,” she said again, earnestly. “Where did it hit you? Are you all right?” She moved close to him.

Miraculously, Sam’s rage had somehow disappeared. The rage had turned into something else, which he couldn’t quite put his finger on. “On the back of my head,” he said. “But it was just a tap. No problem.”

“Let me look,” she said, stepping behind him and putting her hands on his temples.

“Seriously, I’m fine,” he said. “It just kind of caught me by surprise.”

She moved back around in front of him. She’s beautiful, he though, and then said, “Where did you hit that ball from? If I hadn’t stopped it, it would probably have gone another twenty-five yards at least. Was that your second shot?”

“It was my tee shot. I hit it from the white tee. I play golf a little.”

“Are you by yourself?” Sam asked.

“Yep. I’m on spring break from the U of O. I’m from Arizona, but my grandparents live here in Mount Shasta, and I’m spending spring break with them. I love them dearly, but I just needed to get out of the house. I don’t know anyone here, so I thought I’d play a round of golf. I’m really sorry I hit into you. It’s my fault. I wasn’t paying close enough attention.”

“It’s okay. My name’s Sam. What’s yours? There are three of us. Do you want to join us?”

“I’d love to. My name’s Tina.”

And the rest is history.

June, a year later … Tucson, Arizona … Sam and Tina were married at the Catalina United Methodist Church. The wedding guests asked, “How did you two meet?”

“I saw him and wanted to get his attention, but he ignored me,” said Tina. “So, I hit him with a golf ball. It works every time. That’s my secret.”

After the wedding, they went on a golf honeymoon. Five courses in seven days. They lived happily ever after.

August, 2021, Yreka California