A Golfer’s Dream-Book Two
written by TheCaddy
Chapter Nine – Life is Full of Uncertainties
The flight home from Calgary was a long tiring trip. The team had been loaded onto a bus at six o’clock in the morning and, after changing planes in Toronto, they arrived back in Queen Anne Island at four-thirty.
The team exited the plane in QAI tired but happy to be home. Dave had hoped his family would be there to pick him up but he and the whole team were shocked when they entered the airport. It seemed half the city had turned out to congratulate them for their national title. The small two-gate airport was overflowing with a throng of well-wishers and signs welcoming the National Champions home. Dave scanned the crowd, found his parents, and quickly walked to them. They hugged and Dave had to ask, “Who arranged this?”
Roger elaborated as both Beth and Julie hugged Dave, “The mayor and the premier have planned a big party. There’s going to be a parade to the Civic Centre where even more fans and supporters are waiting to welcome the team home.”
Dave was happily pleased with the news. He also spotted Katherine standing near the back of the crowd with a few of her friends so he excused himself and walked over to see her. As he neared, she blushed. He took her hands and kissed her on the cheek, “I’m glad you came out to welcome us home.”
She smiled and bashfully whispered, “Thank you for saying hello to me on National television. I was very surprised and pleased.”
Dave nodded and asked, “Are you coming to the party at the Civic Centre?”
She nodded indicating her friends, “Yes, we were planning on it.”
Dave kissed her on the cheek again and replied, “Good! I’ll see you there. Excuse me but I have to find my luggage.” Dave then nodded a polite hello and goodbye to the two girls standing with Katherine. He only knew they were her friends from school.
Dave found his luggage and waddled over to his parents with the hockey bag and his suitcase. His father and Julie each took a bag and Roger informed him, “We’ll take your stuff. Your chariot awaits you outside.”
Dave looked at him with a puzzled look but, after a gentle push from his mother, he followed his teammates out the front door. Lined up just outside the airport were five bright red fire engines covered with more signs. The fire engine in the front had a huge sign that read “Edwardton Islanders – 2003 National Midget Champions.” The Air Canada Cup was sitting on the roof of the engine’s cab and Ken Jackson was standing proudly behind it. There were several other players already on top of the fire engine along with some girls Dave recognized to be their girlfriends.
Dave laughed to himself and moved to the back of the first fire engine and started to climb on. Craig pushed him back to the ground and looked angry as he stood over him. Dave looked up bewildered and asked, “What gives?”
Craig could not keep his grim look; he smiled and laughed, “That’s your ride, dude – over there.”
Dave turned around and looked where Craig was pointing. The second fire engine had his MVP trophy on top of the cab and a large sign which read, “Dave MacDonald – 2003 National Midget Championship Most Valuable Player”
Dave did a double take as he looked at the sign. A tear formed in his eye. He was staring at the sign when John walked in front of him laughing. Dave said, “Come on that fire truck with me. I couldn’t have done it without you.”
John nodded and, with his on-again off-again girlfriend, Heather, under his arm, he followed Dave towards the second truck. On their way, they spotted Rudy walking with his girlfriend, so they grabbed his arm and pulled both of them behind the second truck as well. Dave put out his hand and said to John and Rudy, “To the best damn offensive line at the National Championships.” The three teammates shook hands and climbed aboard the fire truck.
All five teens were standing high up on the truck as the remaining trucks filled with players, coaches, and girlfriends. The lead truck had begun to slowly move when Dave spotted Katherine standing with her friends, he called to her, “Come up here with me. I feel lonely.”
She smiled and ran to the back of his truck. A fireman helped her onto the truck so she could make her way up to Dave. He pulled her into his arms, kissed her softly on the lips, and helped her get seated right beside him with the trophy sitting between them.
The ride to the Civic Centre was very slow. Hundreds of cars honked their horns while thousands of people came out of their houses and waved to the players. The normal two-mile trip took forty minutes because the parade had detoured right through the middle of town.
When they finally arrived at the Civic Centre, Dave thought his arm was going to fall off from all the waving and his jaw was sore from smiling.
The team and entourage made their way into the rink and the whole team was again surprised to see thousands of people inside the arena. The ice had been removed several weeks earlier and a large stage was setup at the former center-ice. The team and the coaches walked onto the stage to a huge ovation from the crowd. The master of ceremonies was the local CBC weatherman; his main mission was to introduce every player. He left Dave until the last and made sure everyone knew Dave had won the MVP award. Dave bashfully waved to the crowd who seemed to give him an extra special applause.
The mayor and the premier each spoke and congratulated the team. Dave was happy that no more notice was given to him alone, as he was beginning to feel guilty for getting more attention than his team-mates. After the speeches, pictures were taken of the team and then of the team with the politicians. Finally, the master of ceremonies announced that there were hot dogs and drinks for everyone. He invited the crowd to come meet the hometown heroes up-close.
Dave and the team walked down off the stage and all were surrounded by well-wishers who either wanted to get autographs or just shake hands. The whole team was soon lined up across the front of the make-shift stage with long lines of supporters in front of each player.
Dave saw a lot of faces he knew; when his uncle Alan and his family came through the line he received a big bear hug, “Great job, Dave. You played incredible.”
Dave was a little overwhelmed by all the show of emotion and was fighting back tears when Alan finally released him. Katherine and Dave’s family had made their way behind him and he was happy to have them close by.
He eventually turned to Katherine and mouthed, “Will you wait for me?” She nodded, so he returned to his fans and friends.
Most of the other players on the team’s lines slowly shrunk but Dave’s only seemed to get longer. There were a lot of small kids and Dave made sure he signed every autograph. It was an hour before Dave’s line was finally down to a handful of people. The arena had pretty well cleared out and mostly just the team and family members remained.
The last two people in Dave’s line were a man and his son; Dave didn’t recognize them. Dave shook the man’s hand, then kneeled down to talk to the small boy who looked to be about six. The little boy lit up when Dave asked his name. He replied, “My name is Brad, just like Brad Prichards. I want to be as good as you and Brad someday. I watched you yesterday and you were awesome.”
Dave chuckled as he heard the comparison to another QAI native who is currently a star with the Tampa Bay Lightning in the NHL. Dave answered, “Do you like to play hockey?” The little boy nodded – so Dave continued, “That’s good. Make sure you have fun and eat real good and maybe someday you will grow up to be as good as Brad Prichards.”
The boy smiled from ear to ear and asked, “As good as you too?”
Dave again laughed, “Yes, as good as me too.”
After Dave signed the boy’s book, the little boy put out his hand mimicking his Dad and shook Dave’s hand. Dave stood and said goodbye. The father thanked Dave and left the arena with his son bouncing around him like a firefly, showing off his autograph.
Dave had to laugh and he shook his head thinking, “What a cute kid.”
He turned to face his father who handed him a hotdog dressed just the way he liked it. He looked at Katherine and his family and politely asked, “Do you mind?” before he dug into his supper without actually waiting for their blessing.
Two hotdogs and two drinks later; Dave was happily finished eating and drinking. He smiled at everyone and said, “Thanks.”
Roger explained, “We’re really proud of you, son – and we can get all the details from you when you get home. Here are my car keys. You can drive Katherine home while your mother and I go home with Julie and Beth.”
Dave nodded and thanked him; then he and Katherine walked over to the team to say their goodbyes to the team-mates. Dave left the Civic Centre happily exhausted. The plane trip had been long and tiring but he had gotten a second wind when the huge crowds showed up at the airport and the arena. Now he was quickly showing fatigue. He and Katherine talked while he drove her home. She thanked him for including her and he reaffirmed that he cared deeply for her. He gave her a friendly kiss on the cheek then said he would see her the following day at school.
When Dave arrived home his parents and sisters were waiting for all the details of the trip and the tournament. He spent an hour telling them everything he could remember.
Julie and Beth eventually went to do their homework, so Dave had a chance to confess some of the left-out details. He began, “Mom and Dad, I have a bit of a confession. You remember the three Asian girls that came to visit me in the hospital in BC?” Dave paused and watched as his father quizzed his mother. Carol whispered something to Roger who nodded an understanding.
Dave continued after the pause, “Well, John called them before we went out west and invited them to come visit us. He initially asked for them to wait to see how the tournament was going but, after we lost the third game, he called them and they arrived on Thursday. As you know, we lost the first three games and were also badly losing game four when they arrived. John and I were so happy to see them and I guess we wanted to show off a little for them. Anyway we came back and tied Central and then went on our winning streak right to the Championship. Some of the players saw the girls at the rink the first day and one player had been a friend with a guy who was in BC with me.
“Rumors started to spread and the coaches followed up on it. The truth is the girls were staying with us in our room and the coaches found out. The head coach pulled John and me into his room and I told him it was all my idea. I thought because I was new on the team, I would not be punished as severely. I told the coach the truth about everything except that it had been my idea. He talked it over with the other coaches and manager and decided that he would not remove us from the final two games – but we had to tell our parents and he wanted to have a meeting with you as well.” Although Dave had started out speaking slowly, his speed had built up and his whole speech just tumbled out. When he stopped, there was silence. Dave looked at his feet a little embarrassed that he had put his parents in this uncomfortable situation.
After a surprisingly short reflection time, Roger looked at Carol and then spoke for both of them. “Dave, when you are representing your team and our province at any event, you have to make sure you do it honorably. Imagine what kind of fall-out would take place now if the media got wind that you and John, two sixteen year old boys, had three girls essentially living with you in the hotel. How would that look for the team, the province, and for yourselves? You have matured into a smart young man and your mother and I often forget that you are only sixteen. You have to take responsibility for your actions. You have to think about consequences.”
Dave was sorry he had disappointed his parents. It felt especially depressing to go from the high of being an acclaimed national champion to the low of having his parents upset with him as a teen-age son. His mother finally added, “Your father and I will have to discuss this further and decide on your punishment. Please go upstairs to your room and write a letter of apology to your coach. We will come up and see you soon.”
Dave dejectedly carried his suitcase upstairs. He wrote the letter by hand and planned to type it onto the computer later. He then unpacked and tossed his many dirty clothes into the hamper. He put the very few clean clothes away before he lay on his bed waiting for his parents. Eventually they walked into his room and closed the door.
His father began in a very stern voice that Dave instantly knew was trouble, “Dave, we are very proud of what you accomplished but we are also very disappointed in your lapse of common sense and good judgment. You understand our concern, so we won’t lecture you anymore; but, so you clearly understand that we do not find this acceptable, we are taking away your car privileges for a month.”
Dave’s jaw dropped open in surprise. How could they take away his freedom? He couldn’t live without the car! He was about to complain but re-considered his father’s tone and immediately knew any debate would be futile – and would likely lead to a longer suspension. Dave finally answered simply, “Yes, sir. I’m sorry I disappointed you, Mom and Dad.”
His father finished with a little softer tone, “We will give you a week off for good behavior but we don’t want to hear one complaint over the next three weeks – that’s part of good behavior. Understood?”
Dave again replied, “Yes, sir. Thank you.”
His parents left the room. Dave turned off the light and tried to go to sleep. Despite his fatigue, he tossed and turned for an hour – first mainly thinking how unfair life was. He finally realized he indeed had screwed up and he had to do the time for his crime. Finally repentant, he fell asleep and slept soundly.
The remainder of the week was very hectic at school. He and John received a lot of attention but their schoolwork had piled up so they spent every evening trying to catch up.
At home, Dave and his parents had received over a dozen calls from sports agents wanting to represent Dave. The first one was a big surprise but, by the tenth, Dave thought of them more as sharks circling their prey. Roger called Alan and the three of them sat down to discuss what to do. Alan had had some experience with agents during his hockey career - he had played two years of major junior hockey before returning to QAI to finish with the Eagles. In the end, Alan suggested they just tell the agents they weren’t interested. If Dave needed an agent in the future, they could search for a reputable one, someone Dave would be comfortable with, at that time.
By the end of the week things had pretty much returned to normal and Dave was happy to have caught up on most of his classes. Katherine had also enjoyed the additional attention she received and Dave was happy they were again on very friendly terms. They had talked often but Dave hadn’t asked her out for fear of leading her on. She may have been disappointed but didn’t push the matter.
John had been shocked by Dave’s punishment. He wasn’t boasting when he explained that his father had been so proud of the Championship, that he had received more praise than criticism despite telling about the Asian cuties. John further said his father actually confessed himself to several indiscretions when he was a teen. His father had concluded with, “Boys will be boys.”
Dave thought a lot about the difference between the reactions of the two fathers and, after much internal debate, he realized that his own father had handled the situation correctly even though his punishment had been harsher than he had expected. He further thought about how his father was always there for him – the price of constant significant love was high expectations for appropriate behavior. Dave knew he wouldn’t trade fathers for all the money in the world.
The meetings with the head coach went well and Dave presented his typed apology. The coach read it, was satisfied with Dave’s understanding, and wished Dave well in the future; he promised him a spot on the team if Dave wanted to return the next year.
Friday after school John and Dave went to a local driving range which had opened after the long snowy winter. There had been a large number of late snowstorms and most golf courses had still not opened even though May was only a few days away. Dave was very happy to be finally hitting balls again. They spent several hours at the range and, except for Dave’s continuing trouble with his driver, they were both very happy when they left.
Dave’s home course of Hornsby had suffered from a very damaging winter and wasn’t scheduled to open for two to three more weeks. Only a few, very poor quality, courses were open so Dave and John continued to just hit balls for several weeks.
During the second week after his return form Calgary, the first week of May, Dave talked to Jennifer several times. Ann had called her and they were working out their friendship. Dave had exchanged several e-mails with Lynn and Tina. They were preparing to start their summer session. Time seemed to creep along as Dave anxiously waited for the golf courses to open and his driving privileges to return. John was happy to return to chauffeur status but Dave hated to impose almost as much as he hated the loss of his independence.
The second week of May was likewise spent hitting balls every day after school. Dave’s practice time didn’t resolve the driver troubles that had begun after his surgery the year before; so, on Wednesday, he asked his father about getting some more lessons. Roger agreed to pay for the lessons; Dave called the Golf Academy and booked some time for the Saturday.
During the week, Dave had also received numerous calls from major junior teams trying to convince him to register for their drafts. Because QAI did not currently have a major junior team, players looking to get drafted could elect to play in any of the four major junior hockey leagues. Most elected for either the Ontario Hockey League OHL or the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League QMJHL. John had told Dave he was electing for the Quebec league because it appeared the Montreal Missiles were going to move to QAI and John wanted to play for them.
On Thursday, Dave had another strategy meeting with his father and Alan, and, even though Dave was doubtful he wanted to play major junior hockey, he elected for the Quebec league as John had done. They agreed that Dave would not attend the draft and, no matter how much any team pressured, Dave would not commit to playing hockey with anyone.
After that was clarified, Roger spoke seriously with Dave about his golf future. Roger explained that he had researched the scholarship process and discovered that this coming summer would be the key year for Dave to showcase his ability if he was serious about a golf future. Dave immediately perked up as Roger outlined a preliminary plan, “We need to do some videos and prepare a promotional kit to send to US universities. You also have to plan some different tournaments to play to get more exposure.
“I reviewed the website for the American Junior Golf Association and there are a lot of tournaments which provide exposure for players. The biggest problem is we are a long way from most tournaments but I think we could plan a few trips this summer into the eastern states so you can attend some quality tournaments. You should apply for an AJGA membership and then compare their tournament schedule with your Merit Tour. It will probably cost quite a bit of money but I want you to have a chance to live your dream. You think about it and visit the website I bookmarked on our computer. If you want to pursue it further, we can talk later.”
Dave was hopping with excitement and quickly forgot about hockey. He went right to the computer and spent two hours surfing and researching the tournaments. He applied for membership that very night.
The application was mailed on Friday and Dave was more determined than ever to get his game in shape. He practiced in the rain on Friday then spent the evening surfing the web investigating US universities.
Dave’s three weeks without the car was not due to expire until the following week but Roger gave him the car, to drive to the Golf Academy only, on Saturday. It was a rare nice day as most of May had been cold and wet contributing to extended opening dates for all the major courses.
The pro who had helped Dave so significantly the previous spring was waiting for him. They stretched together before hitting a bucket of balls. The pro quickly asked, “Dave, how much have you grown in the last year?”
Dave replied, “I grew four inches last summer and I think I stretched up a little more this winter.”
The pro said, “Let’s go inside and get some measurements.”
Dave followed him inside and the pro measured the length of his arms, legs and overall height. Dave had grown one more inch and was now six foot four inches tall. The pro finally said, “Dave, your clubs are actually too short for you now. You should seriously consider new clubs. I would also recommend that whoever you buy them from measure you and get them custom fit.”
Dave nodded understandingly but was very worried about asking his father to foot a big equipment bill, again. He was slightly distracted when the pro said, “Here, I have driver which was designed for someone your height. Let’s try it.”
They returned to the practice tee and Dave hit several shots with moderate results. The pro stepped in and adjusted the position of the ball in Dave’s stance. He also told Dave to return to his standard grip. Dave had been trying so many changes with his troubled driver that he didn’t realize but he was actually gripping it slightly different than the rest of his clubs. Dave hit a ball – the trajectory was much better and it felt good when it left the face of the club. Dave hit a few more and gained confidence with each shot. After a dozen balls Dave was hitting a gentle draw farther than he had ever hit it before. He was very happy.
The rest of the lesson was spent tweaking his irons and fairway wood. Dave drove home very excited with the results.
Roger was cleaning the yard when Dave arrived home, so Dave changed and went out to help him. They talked as they worked. After an hour Dave said, “Dad, I think I’m going to find a summer job.” Roger looked at him curiously, so Dave continued, “As I said, my lessons went really well but the pro did some measurements and he said my clubs are too small.”
Dave was a little surprised when his father nodded and said, “I was afraid of that. I have been thinking about this for a few months now. I really want to see you get a job but I also know how important your golf is. Why don’t you focus on your golf for one more summer without the distractions of a job. If you have a good summer and get a scholarship then I’ll save lots of money on your education.” Roger looked at his watch. “It’s two o’clock now, let’s finish here, then drive out to Hornsby and see what they have in stock in the pro shop.”
Dave worked hard to quickly finish cleaning the yard. Thirty minutes later they went in the house, cleaned up, changed and drove to Hornsby. The pro shop had just received the summer stock and the club pro was happy to help Roger and Dave pick out some clubs. Dave found a Taylormade 580 driver similar to the one he had hit that morning at the academy. The pro took Dave’s measurements and gave him some sample irons to take to the practice range and try. Dave hit four different kinds of irons: PING, Taylormade, Titliest, and Callaway. Dave really liked the feel of the Taylormade RAC tour blades. He looked at the price and almost choked when he saw $1,200. The driver was $550 and the three-wood he liked was $400.
He looked at his dad and said, “These are too expensive, Dad.”
Roger had already done all the calculations, including the nasty taxes of 17.7%, and knew the total was over $2,500. Roger explained, “We’ll trade my old set in on them and I’ll take your set from last year. That should bring the price down some. I am going to declare this an investment in your education and take the money from the education fund your mother and I have saved for you. I will put the money back in over the next year and half.”
Dave thanked his father and they returned to the pro shop. The club pro ordered a new set of irons adjusted to fit Dave’s measurements. The driver and three-wood were in stock and Dave took them home that day. The irons were expected to arrive before the end of the week. The club pro said, “The clubs should be here for opening day next Saturday.” Dave thanked his father over and over, all the way home.
Dave went out with John that night. They hung out at McDonalds as usual. Dave was a little surprised and jealous when he saw Katherine with another guy he knew from school, but deep down he was happy for her. He knew he couldn’t commit to her and she was too nice to be alone for long.
On Sunday Dave received a surprise e-mail from Sarah Thurlow in England. Dave and Sarah had been conversing by e-mail all winter. The surprise was an invitation to visit her after school finished for the year. She explained that her father wanted to show his gratitude for what Dave had done the previous summer and proposed to fly Dave to England for an all-expense-paid two week vacation. She said the flight was tentatively booked for June 25th with a return flight on July 9th. Dave asked his parents for permission to go on the trip and they said they would call the Thurlows that evening to get all the details.
After his parents worked out the details with Sarah’s parents, Dave spoke to Sarah. It had been nine months since he had heard her soft English voice. They were both very excited about the impending trip. Sarah promised to arrange some golf for him and told him to bring his clubs.
Dave thanked his parents a hundred times before he went to bed that night. He lay in bed thinking how his summer schedule had just gotten a lot fuller and he would have to rearrange his planned tournament schedule again. He happily fell asleep thinking about his princess and the melody of her voice.
Final exams were drawing near and Dave studied hard to get prepared. He hit balls after school everyday then spent the evenings studying or surfing for US universities. Tuesday was the first day he could drive to the golf course after school – he was totally happy to have his freedom back.
Dave’s new irons arrived on Friday and he raced to Hornsby after school to get them. He hit balls for three hours. He was hitting his new irons for slightly longer distance than the previous summer – but only about ten yards. What he really liked was the weight and feel of the new clubs and he was anxious to play on opening day. He was building confidence that his accuracy would improve more than his distance.
After he arrived home from the course, he got a call from John and they went out for the night. Dave picked John up for a welcome change; they drove around for a while chatting before going to McDonalds. John was particularly excited, talking about the scouts who had approached him. Dave quietly listened to his friend and inwardly hoped the best for him.
At McDonalds, Dave and John sat with several of their teammates. Because the Islanders team was made up of players from all over the province, most of the players didn’t go to the same school as Dave and John. But Rudy was there with his girlfriend as was Ken Jackson. They talked for a while catching up on the previous month.
Dave saw Katherine walk in with a different guy from the previous week. When she noticed him, he just smiled and waved a brief hello.
Dave asked John what he was doing the following night and John told him that he and Heather were going to a movie. Dave just nodded as he thought about spending another weekend night home alone. He decided right then to find a date for the following night. While John was talking to Ken and Rudy he saw a girl from school. Her name was Vickie and she was a pretty brunette. She was sitting nearby with one of her girlfriends, and Dave decided to go ask her out.
Dave walked over to where they were sitting and asked if he could join them. Both girls looked surprised but pleased by the interruption. Dave sat beside Vickie and joined their conversation about school. After chatting for a while Dave asked, “Vickie, I was wondering if you would like to go to a show with me tomorrow night?”
Vickie’s face lit up and Dave thought she was going to say yes but her expression suddenly changed to a very serious look and she replied, “I’d like to, Dave, but I can’t.”
Dave was stunned. He had prepared for a rejection but then, when her face initially lit up, he was sure she would say yes. Hurt by the rejection, he slinked away back to his seat with John. John asked him what he had done and, after he told him, John stared at him as if he was the stupidest person in the world.
Dave looked questioningly at John and John finally pointed over to Vickie. Dave turned and looked to where Vickie was sitting. Katherine was sitting with Vickie while her date was sitting at the other side of the restaurant. Katherine and Vickie were making gestures towards Dave and, like a ton of bricks landing on his head, the weight of his error hit him. Vickie was one of Katherine’s good friends. At first he felt like a fool but then he thought about Katherine dating other people and decided he had nothing to feel bad about.
Dave glanced over at Vickie again and Katherine was gone. He looked over where Katherine’s date had been but her date was gone as well. A few minutes later Vickie walked up beside him and she asked, “Can I speak to you, Dave?”
Dave nodded and followed her to an empty booth. She began, “Dave, I would like to go out with you but Katherine is my best friend and she would be very mad at me if I dated you. She still loves you very much and is hoping you will ask her out again.”
Dave was only a little surprised by Vickie’s words and he replied, “I had thought about asking her out but I don’t want to hurt her any more than I already have. I really like her a lot but I am going to be getting back together with my girlfriend from last summer in July, so I would just be leading her on. Besides she is starting to date again and I don’t want to stop her from finding someone else.”
Vickie looked at Dave very seriously, “She’s not actually dating; she’s only going out because she wants to make you jealous. She doesn’t care about those guys – she wants you.”
Dave was happy to hear this but he asked, “Vickie, what do you think I should do? I don’t want to hurt Katherine but I would love to date her until the end of school.”
Vickie thought for a minute then looked Dave in the eyes and replied, “I know she would like to be dating you. She wants more and seeing you in school everyday drives her crazy. If you explain to her that you want to date her until the end of school, with no strings attached after that, I think she would like that. Just make it clear that, when school ends, so does your dating. If she is going to get over you, it will be easier over the summer when she is busy with her soccer and other friends.”
Surprised at the depth of Vickie’s advice, Dave needed a few seconds to think. Finally, he nodded agreement, “Are you sure she will go for that?”
Vickie replied, “Definitely.”
He thanked Vickie and went back to sit with John. After explaining everything to John they left. He dropped John at his house and went home and went to bed.
Dave slept in on Saturday until nine-thirty. After showering he called Katherine. She answered the phone and Dave asked, “How are you today?”
Katherine replied, “Good, thanks.”
Dave continued, “Are you doing anything tonight?”
After a long pause she answered in a quiet voice, “No, why?”
Dave’s stomach was beginning to churn and he wondered why he was so nervous, “Would you like to go to a movie with me?”
Another pregnant pause and Dave was expecting to be told off but she finally said, “I guess so.”
Dave felt a little better but he could feel the tension in the flatness of Katherine’s voice, “I’m playing golf this afternoon and won’t be finished until after five. Can I pick you up at seven, then we could go out to eat before the show?”
With a short “okay” for a response Katherine was gone and Dave was instantly wondering if this had been such a good idea.
Dave went to the golf course shortly after the phone call and hit balls for a few hours before his tee time. John showed up about ten minutes before the tee time. They talked briefly before they were called to the tee. They spent the day golfing but John continued to talk more about hockey than golf. He explained that his father had hired Elliott MacEachern to develop a training program so he would be ready for hockey training camp in August.
Dave asked when in the August training camp started and John told him the second week. Dave immediately thought how that was too close to the National Junior Golf Tournament. He didn’t bother explaining that to John who was obviously more excited about his hockey.
Dave loved his new clubs but Hornsby’s greens were in really poor shape. There were a lot of dead spots and the greens were very rough to putt on. Dave scrapped out a seventy-one but was initially more surprised that John shot eighty. After some thought he realized John was quickly losing his golf focus and golf was becoming just a leisure sport as hockey moved into the passion sport role.
Dave went home and showered before his date with Katherine. As the water beat down on him he thought how the day was surrounded with uncertainty. John’s golf future was now very uncertain as his hockey dreams took over all his thoughts. Dave’s future with Katherine was also uncertain – his love life had become so complex. He was lonely and wanted to be with someone but Jennifer was a province away. He truly cared for Katherine but feared that momentary lust would take control of him and he would do something with Katherine that would jeopardize his summer with Jennifer. He tossed scenarios through his mind until the water suddenly turned cold, shaking him from his reverie. He decided to date Katherine but under no circumstance allow their sexual relationship to advance beyond its current boundaries. As he dressed for the evening out, he continued to wonder if dating Katherine would work out. He also began thinking forward to his trip to England and getting to really know more about Sarah.