Thirteen can be a lucky number!

On this holiday, thirteen years ago, I came home from work and changed my clothes. It was a sunny day, that is not a rarity in South Florida, but it was fairly mild temperature wise so golf was the decision on how to spend the afternoon.

I decided to walk, which is rare in South Florida golf. Most people ride motorized carts. Delray Beach Muni allows walking and also boasts nine holes designed by the great Donald Ross. So it was off to play golf. Little did I know how that decision was to change my life.

Stepping up to the counter, I announced my intention on how I wanted to play. After taking my money, the counterman turns to a woman in the pro shop and says that I might be kind enough to play with her. After our introduction and a few putts on the practice green we were off.

Lucky for me, the stigma of tees was not an issue to me. I had rectified that playing from any tee was the same golf course only using different clubs. I asked the young woman from Sweden if she would like me to play from the forward tees with her. I just thought it more conducive to have a social round.

I quickly enjoyed playing with Eva. She was a player, as her efforts were signified by the sound of her club hitting the golf ball. I also learned my first words of Swedish as an errant shot was met with a flurry of words that I was sure didn’t mean, “Nice shot, Eva!”

By the turn, I was captured and spent the back nine trying out various scenarios that would extend our time together. Alas, at the end of the round, the clubhouse lounge was closed so I couldn’t invite her to the 19th hole.

But I did carry her bag (just a small pencil travel kit) to her car and tripped all over myself getting another date with her. As the poets would say, I was smitten.

Well, since that fateful day, I followed Eva to Stockholm almost a year later to the day. We have been a twosome ever since. I can safely say that I have played more rounds of golf with Eva than any other person on earth. We have played above the Arctic Circle and in Europe, Morocco and the USA.

Eva has changed my life in so many wonderful ways. I am a better person for knowing her and, much to my detriment, I don’t let her know it enough.

But I’m here to tell you all, especially her, that Memorial Day 2004 is memorable to me. It was kismet that brought us together. It was my lucky day.