It’s easy in the winter to plan big. It’s easy to think somehow those long days in June can never be overfilled. And July — why, July has no harvest or planting, so there will be plenty of time to read a book in a hammock as well as learn something new that challenges.
Perhaps it’s a carryover from my school days when the long days of summer allowed such a wonderful change for this boy who felt trapped indoors. The summer days I remember seemed long enough to get almost anything done; and so, well, I don’t think twice about promising to host the whole family at the lake for a weekend. The local clubs I belong to are holding a special event? No problem, the sun is up 18 hours, I can farm early and help out. Grind some stumps and re-landscape the yard? Easy. Move a shed, build a bin, stain the house, weed the garden? No problem.
Suddenly the calendar is full and the grandkids’ T-ball games aren’t yet listed. Wednesday night motorcycle runs haven’t been
accounted for, the harsh reality of grain harvest is looming, and I haven’t been fishing.
Golf hasn’t been mentioned yet because for the most part I don’t like golf. But the local sugarbeet groups I have been a part of for so long always schedule a couple rounds each summer. I make at least one event just to see friends I have worked with and catch up on what’s going on in their lives. It is always a humbling experience.
I’m going golfing with Michael.
It happens about once a year.
You’d think I’d get smart, forget about golf,
Just go along and drink beer.
Each year I give him a new chance
To make me look just like a fool.
I don’t even have the right kind of shirt.
And Mike, well, he’s always dressed cool.
Some guys seem to think golfing
Is a sociable summertime sport.
But those guys don’t drive the ball seven times,
Then three putt and still come up short.
I concentrate on my backswing
’Til the sweat’s beaded up on my brow.
And yet when I’ve swung, I’ve missed the ball clean
Or dug a deep trench like a plow.
Though Mike would never make fun of
My complete lack of golfing finesse,
Waiting for me, lost in the trees,
Surely must cause him some stress.
Mike says the score ain’t important.
But once more like clockwork he wins.
I add up the strokes, then grovel and whine.
Mike, well, he stands there and grins.
Write Field column is written by David Kragnes. David farms near Felton, MN. He is a former Chairman of American Crystal Sugar Co., and currently serves on the board of directors of CoBank.