Hawaii- A Stop Before Heaven
By Peter Hellman
Some years ago, my then wife and I took my elderly parents to
Dad had been an avid golfer for much of his adult life. Though at 85 he was in good health and quite mobile, he complained that he no longer "had game". He preferred hitting range balls to embarrassing himself on the golf course, he said. I knew that the only way that I was going to convince him to play was to employ a strategy some times effectively used by parents - guilt. "Dad," I said, "if you won't play golf for yourself, would you please do it for me?"
It worked! The next day, after a bucket of balls, we started off on the first of nine holes on the Kaanapali Kai Course. Oh, there is one more thing you need to know about my Dad. He hates carts. Electric or gas powered, they were all the same to him. Though they were okay for getting around in a retirement community, they didn't belong on a golf course according to Dad. In some respects I shared his view, but I also knew we wouldn't finish nine holes without some mechanical assistance.
Having mastered the cart challenge, we were off. Neither Dad nor I played well, but I got my wish and we both enjoyed doing together something we had done many times in the past. It was the 8th hole when things got really interesting. Dad had had a few too many whacks at the ball and was some 130 yards from the hole. I had gotten on the green and was looking back at Dad as he hit his ball. It was a blind shot. A large bunker rose to protect the green from any view of the hole. Dad's shot was high and soft. It bounced twice on the green and disappeared into the hole. "Wow! What's Dad talking about, he's got game and with encouragement like that, he'll want to play tomorrow and probably for the next ten years", I said to myself
Back in the cart, my Dad seemed amazingly calm. The excitement I felt was apparently not mutually shared. As I began to make our way to the 9th tee box, Dad turned to me, smiled and said, "That's it. Take me home. I've played my final round and you know what, I played it for me."
Cruising, however, is not for everyone. And, even if you have cruised a lot, you may find the service level on NCL's Hawaiian cruises a bit "boogie". This has much to do with
Story by Classic GOLF