Inside Sports for Wednesday — January 18, 2006

• Family affair out on the course


Family affair out on the course

It’s not often that I get the chance to golf with relatives, but when I do, I take full advantage of the opportunity.

On Monday at Wailua Golf Course, Gavin and Marcus Shimogawa, brothers, who attend Waimea High School and Waimea Canyon School rang up the eastside public course with me, with the intention to enjoy the game while in the company of family.

Both brothers have recently found out about their love for the sport of golf and head to their home course, Kuku’iolono, as much as they can (or whenever their mom Roseanne has time to drop them off).

Gavin, a sophomore, plans to be on the Menehune golf squad this season, while Marcus hopes to just whack the ball as far as it can go.

The golf course is an excellent place to bond with family members and my two rascal cousins. Marcus and Gavin made great golf partners, even if they were as bad at hitting the ball as their dad is at shooting pigs.

It was a long day with a full load of individuals on the course, so it almost felt as if we were waiting at a Disneyland ride, rather than playing a round of golf.

It was also interesting to see the types of clubs both Marcus and Gavin used, with the younger boy sporting the newer-looking garage sale special and Gavin using worn-out hand-me-downs from 1902 (you should check out his putter).

But as we approached the tee box on the first hole, we were gladly greeted by “Max,” who made our group a perfect four-some.

Along the way, the caliber of play got a little better, but every once in awhile, all of four of us, had our not-so-good moments.

Watching my cousins play made me think about why I didn’t catch on to golf earlier.

We have an excellent junior golf program on the island, spearheaded by numerous parents and volunteers who also love the game of golf.

The best players are the ones who joined a junior golf program and played consistently from the time they could pick up a spoon.

Tiger Woods and Michelle Wie are great examples of what can happen if the game is taken seriously, with a hint of fun, from a young age.

Plus when you’re a junior golfer on Kaua’i, the cost of hitting up some of the courses on the island is as much as a bottle of water.

As we took the turn to the back nine, “Max” headed home and decided to spend the rest of his Martin Luther King Jr. Day relaxing on his Lazy Boy.

In the meantime, Gavin was nice enough to give Marcus his seat in the cart the rest of the way.

However, the slowness allowed the three of us time to “catch up.”

And with the sun shining and the clubs swinging wildly, it was just one of those moments worth remembering — even if our games seemed forgettable.

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