Monday, August 11, 2008

How a children's book character helped me play golf

The week before last I was on vacation in Virginia (near Charlottesville), and spent a good part of my time learning how to play golf. Golf had never seemed to me a sport I could actually learn, although I do enjoy watching Tiger Woods. It just seemed to complicated. My father is really into golf, but I've only been out on a golf course one time, when my mother and I went with him while he played--I mainly amused myself driving the golf cart while my mom washed the golf balls. But this time, I actually learned how to play. My friend G was my coach, and a quite good one at that. He always knew where my ball would go depending on which club I used. And although I'm a far way from getting good, by the end of the week I was averaging between 5 and 10 strokes depending on the hole, and I was actually driving from the tees.

But my big challenge was focusing on the ball rather than looking ahead to where I thought the ball should go. "Keep your head down!" G kept saying. When he said that, I thought, Gee, that sounds familiar. And it was because it reminded me of the second Sergio book, coming out next Spring, Sergio Saves the Game. In this book, Sergio learns how to play soccer, and his coach and teammates remind him to "Keep your head down! And your wings up! And your eye on the ball!" Well, except for the wings part, this mantra helped me with golf. I would tell myself, "Keep your head down, Sergio! Keep your eye on the ball!" And you know what? It actually worked. So, thank you Edel, and thank you Sergio.

No comments: