Ahhh, the daze of creative play before cell phones, SUV's and soccer moms. My back yard was separated from the Olympic Club by only $1 million and a broken picket fence and we would use the rough on the 7-8th holes of the ocean course as our park and playground. Tree houses and dugouts covered with brush served as army forts, The Alamo, and smoking lodges when we started junior high. The thrill was to get Mr. O'Mally, the greens supervisor, to chase us in his tractor and ditch into the safety of our make-shift sanctuaries. We would also run out in the fairway and steal balls hit beyond the view of the tee. During the space race, we would shoot off home made rockets into the other fairways, failing to account for Newtonian laws of motion and gravity and it is only by a miracle that we never impaled anyone. The mystique changed once we all started to caddy there and remember hearing stories of guys falling into covered pits while searching for their balls in the rough or of big money being lost because some one could not find his ball in the middle of the fairway.
It was a good time to be a bad boy: I feel sad for kids today who need a computer or fixed schedule to have some fun. All we needed was a little time, a few friends and no one looking.