austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,
austin_dern
austin_dern

Like a vision from a disco golf magazine

The next day of bunny_hugger's visit started late, since I thought we'd be more exhausted than we felt after the long day in Seaside Heights. It did feel to me like I'd barely touched bed when it was time to get up again. We started out again with breakfast/lunch at Jersey Mike's, a local chain of sub shops which actually somehow got its start in Albany, New York (there called ``Mike's''), the corporate history of which has intersected my father's life as a consultant more often than you might expect. That Tuesday we'd gotten a --- vegetable, or cheese, depending on your point of view --- sub there and we were taking in an encore, though at a different spot.

Our thought was that we could try miniature golf, since I remembered a spot for such somewhere on Route 9 (southbound side but north of me, making it impossible to succinctly describe). The catch is I didn't remember exactly where it was. While I pass it often, it's while I drive, and as something on on the road it held a low priority to my mind. I did drive in the general direction, confident that it was coming up in just a little bit, at least until I'd gone past even the yoga center and Borders bookstore. But this took us to nearly the spot where I had my first job, in a failed mall that's since been almost entirely torn down and which has a shockingly complete description on Wikipedia, as well as the county's main library. I'd remembered the library as being just a little too far from the mall for convenient walking, but on hindsight, it seems a lot nearer. My ideas of walking range are very inconsistent.

Heading back, though, we found the miniature golf place, which had not only two trails but also that isometric view Pac-Mania game from the late 80s. On the trail we took --- Raccoon Hollow --- we took our sweet time and played long enough to go from late afternoon to respectably evening. We were consistently letting other people play through and wondering at the mindset that tries to rush through miniature golf. The best prop on the course was, in my opinion, the waterfall. Our trail went under the waterfall and into a little `cave' which included a window behind the falling water, and underneath the other trail. It also included various patches of soaked astroturf-type grass and about one-third of all Voyager episodes ever, along with a steady trail of people discovering how complicated the hole inside the cave could be.

Another challenging hole was one of those with the little hole in the `rock cliff which, if you get the ball in just right, threatens to five you a hole-in-one. Maybe. The `rock' face was chipped a bit, and I suspected right away that this was not the way to go, but we spent time studying it while a gaggle of about a half-dozen teens came through and tried nearly every possible sort of shot, some of them simultaneously. They became kind of companions to our game, never more than one or two holes away, with that exciting young-male blend of competitiveness and desire to keep doing things over until they hit something cool. I believe bunny_hugger shot better than I did, but I wasn't keeping any close track, and I'll stick to that story if questioned.

In contrast to my most recent miniature golf experiments, nobody was attacked by vicious combat-ready Southeast Asian ants.

Trivia: Leading the drive to get the first space shuttle orbiter named Enterprise, after the Star Trek starship, was Richard Hoagland, later famous for the ``Face on Mars''. Source: Development of the Shuttle, 1972 - 1981, T A Heppenheimer.

Currently Reading: Mysteries of the Middle Ages: The Rise of Feminism, Science, and Art from the Cults of Catholic Europe, Thomas Cahill.

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