It is 7:38 on Thursday morning at the end of June. I’m sitting at Stauf’s Cafe in Grandview enjoying the cool morning air and people watching. The people watching is interesting because there is a difference between the population here and that of San Francisco; it has been a long time since I’ve seen Ohio people.
The week has been a blur and here we are, already into Thursday and the end of my time here in Ohio. When thinking of my Ohio trip in San Francisco I thought I’d have well laid plans, plenty of time and do a large number of activities. Instead, things have popped up and my schedule filled rather quickly.
During the first part of the week I was able to make it out to Wilson Road on Monday and Tuesday morning before sunrise. On my first time out and on the first hole I got a birdie. that first day I ended up with three birdies and a 34 which is just 4 over par. Playing Wilson is always a very special and downright ‘spiritual’ experience for me. I’ve written an extensive post on this so will just link it here instead of rehashing.
On Tuesday I did a bit worse but then met my Uncle Bob at Raymond for another round and saw that I’ve still got it! I was able to hit most greens in regulation but my problem was putting, I three putted most greens. However, it was the first time I’ve ever beaten my Uncle Bob in golf. He has always been a great golfer but is now 70 so cannot hit the ball as far as he used to. However, he still hits them straight and his short game is absolutely deadly. His chipping always puts the ball very close to the pin and then he one putts. But, since Raymond is a very long course and I’ve got the advantage there I was able to win but only by 2 strokes.
I forgot to mention that I went to Zoombezi Bay with my Dad on Monday which was fun. Zoombezi Bay used to be Wyandot Lake when I was a kid. I have wonderful memories of it when I was in 8th grade. We had summer passes and I’d go with my friend Ryan Gray. There were no parents, just him and I strolling around, checking out the girls, playing Paperboy in the arcade, riding the Octopus and going down the massive water slides. That was perhaps one of the best times of my life as it was the final summer of absolute freedom with no responsibilities. During my summers in high school I worked on Wilson / Raymond Golf courses doing maintenance aka grass cutting.
Zoombezi Bay is much different than Wyandot Lake. They are on the same location but it has been completely redesigned and so didn’t evoke any memories for me. The scariest waterside is gone but was replaced by one similar but with a much more gentle slope. It used to be almost a free fall right off the bat but now is covered and goes around a bend before dropping down. The water park is now also catering much more to adults since they serve beer.
Before I get to Wednesday I should mention Sunday. We did a bike ride around Grandview, went to my old grade school Trinity and rode on the swings, rode past the house I grew up in, and finally visited the library. In the evening we went over to my sister’s for a wonderful cookout.
On Wednesday I finally allowed myself to sleep in instead of getting out to Wilson before sunrise. I spent a lot of time on the porch swing, and helped my Mom with a tremendous amount of bird and animal feed in the morning. Then I came home and took a short nap on the porch swing. I say short because soon after I fell asleep the grass cutting people arrived and made incredibly loud noise. I then decided another bike ride was in order and headed straight for the Boulevard Carry out. It isn’t far from the house where I grew up and I have fond memories going there as a kid for gum that looked like baseballs and Big League Chew. Now, their primary offering is alcohol stocked to the ceiling! I guess alcohol has a better profit margin than baseball shaped gum. Being unable to find the gum I settled for a Monster energy drink and beef jerky.
I then rode over to St. Christopher and saw the setup for their festival on Friday. I had wanted to get a swing in but there were kids there and it might look weird for a 41 year old (who looks 30 mind you!) to show up on a 1950s bike wanting to swing. So I decided to ride down to Oxley passed my childhood friend Ryan Gray’s old place then to the ball park.
For the evening we went over to the restaurant Akai Hana which myu sister took me too last year and is located in the little Japan Town here in Columbus. They have a grocery store, the restaurant and a few other little Japanese shops. It is so strange for me to see a slice of Japan here in Ohio. It is like two chapters of my life erroneously mixing and causing me confusion. I think my first visit last year was a bit better because the server offered a lot of good suggestions and they had my favorite sake which are Oni Karoshi (Devil Killer) and Hakkaisan. Those are now gone and the server seemed a bit rushed. Everything was still very good but didn’t top last year’s visit.
So this brings us to today which is Thursday. I’m still here at Stauf’s and will take a bike ride over to Trinity hoping to hop on those swings for a bit again. There are two things on the agenda: to play golf with my Uncle Bob again but this time at New Albany Links with his golf league and to meet up with my buddies Ross, Todd and Brian at DubPub. I learned that my friend Brian is actually part owner at DubPub so thought it would be cool to have a few drinks in his bar.
Friday will also be a busy day. I’m planning on finally getting that bike ride in with my Dad and getting to the Grandview Pool. We’ll go to the pool first and then take the bike ride to a few of the newer pubs here in Grandview. Then Friday night is the main event! I’ve spent a lot of time contacting people from my high school telling them to come out so it will be a nice reunion. First we’ll head over to the St. Christopher festival and then I’ll walk over to Byrne’s Pub for the reunion. Should be a great time and I doubt I’ll have time to get a post in so thought I should mention it here.
Well, the sun is now up in the sky and shining down directly on me. The temperature is rising so I should probably hop back on my bike and go see about those swings.