This week the Wyndham Championships is in town. I always enjoy spending time at this tour event walking the fairways with some of my contemporaries from the amateur ranks. Formerly considered a party event (think Nascar + fraternity kegger), the previously named Greater Greensboro Open has reinvented itself since moving to its new venue, Sedgfield Country Club, for the second consecutive year.
My reason for attending this year is can be summed up in one word, Freddie. Fred Couples was my childhood hero and remains my favorite golfer to pull for. Many times I played with Couples in the afternoons while the shadows grew long as the sun kissed the horizon. Sure, this was all in the mind of my youth, but I never played alone while I dreamed of one day sharing the bentgrass stage with Boom Boom.
Yesterday watching him play brought me back to those days, as he strolled down the fairway in his signature nonchalant gate. The pre-shot routine is the same after all of these years (tip). The sound of impact sounded more like it was fired from a howitzer than struck with a driver, just like it did as I witnessed him shooting 64 at the Emerald Golf Club in 1996.
There is joy in being in the presence of greatness. There is awe in being in the company of those you admire. I hope you have the chance to relive your childhood dreams as watching Freddie enabled me to do. It will remind you of the time when you believed your dreams would come true. We must fight to hold on to that simple childlike faith. The world may try to steal it or destroy it but it is up to us to preserve it, to nurture it. Go revisit your childhood heroes and renew your mind to believing again.