The past weekend, Pete and I were lucky enough to score tickets to the US Open. Pre-Pete, I would have turned them down, but since he loves watching golf, and I’ve started to think it slightly interesting instead of boring, I accepted the tickets.
We had a great weekend. We left Saturday and headed to Laguna Beach for lunch on route to San Diego. Pete had never been, and I hadn’t been in years. We found a hotel with a roof top deck over looking the Pacific, which was gorgeous. Although we live right next to the beach and can even see the ocean from our apartment, the water in Laguna is bluer and cleaner and just plain nicer looking. We watched pelicans soar by while munching on empanadas and hummus (not together). It seemed like the perfect place to sip a mojito if I wasn’t pregnant (lots were being imbibed around us). After blissing out on the ocean and scenery, we headed back to the car for the last hour to San Diego.
Our generous hosts put us up at the Inn at Rancho Santa Fe. It was charming and cute with a king size bed that I wish were in our bedroom at home. Neither of us had ever been to Rancho Santa Fe so it was an experience. The road winds between large gates, lots of trees and flowers. If you didn’t look carefully, you probably wouldn’t even realize there were houses back there. There is a town about the size of a peanut that seemed to only have real estate brokers in it. The photos on the windows advertised houses from the low $700s to $35 million. The $700,000 house wasn’t in Rancho Santa Fe. Needless to say, we decided $35 million was a little high, but the $2.5 house was within reach. By the time we saw the one for $700,000, we thought we should just snap it up.
Sunday, we headed over to Torrey Pines to watch the US Open. What an experience! I’ve been to pro-sports events before, but never golf that lasts for 4 (now 5) days. My first thought was I should have brought a single girl with me because the place was swarming with men. The ratio had to be about 10 guys to every 2 women. And the women were almost all with husbands or boyfriends so the competition would be limited. Of course, after awhile of looking around, it became apparent I was trapped in the largest fraternity party around, and rethought the single girl scenario (at least in regards to most of my friends).
We planned on walking the course because we’d heard how gorgeous Torrey Pines is, but the crowds were massive. We stopped at the 8th hole to watch some people putt, and Pete noticed the line to the grandstand wasn’t too long. So we cued up and waited 45 minutes to get seated in the stands. It was really cool because we could see them tee off and then putt at the hole. And our timing couldn’t have been better. We were able to see the top 15 or 20 players on that hole – including Tiger Woods. And wow! That man travels with an entourage. We could see him coming long before we saw him. The press corps surrounding him is INSANE not to mention the rabid fans.
His shot went into the bunker (sand trap for novices), and in my naïve mind I thought it would take him a shot or two to get out. Nope, one chip and his ball landed about a foot from the hole. Note to self: Professional golfers are not like the rest of us – especially Tiger.
Since Tiger was the last one to play the hole, everyone vacated the grandstand, or tried. Every where we looked, there were seas of people moving after the man in the red shirt.
Again, we planned on walking more of the course, but after seeing the throngs of people, we decided to take it easy and watch people finish at the 18th hole. Apparently, we weren’t the only ones with this plan. People were 10 deep in the viewing area of the last green. We stood on tip toes, we veered left, crooked our heads right and still, we couldn’t see shit. After awhile of this, we accepted defeat and headed home with Tiger on the 14th.
AM radio provided us with a play by play as we zipped north from San Diego (no traffic – hooray!!). By the time we heard he’d tied it, we were north of San Clemente with LA clearly on the horizon. It would have been great to be in the stands to watch that moment, but since we knew the reality of the viewing, we enjoyed it just as much from the car knowing we’d seen one of the greatest golfers ever play earlier that day.