Monday, October 6, 2008

Duane and Tracy's Wedding

This weekend, Duane and Tracy tied the knot. The Lent's were married at approximately 6:00 PM this past Saturday at Penn Oaks Country Club. It was a beautiful ceremony, and the bride and groom looked stunning, as they say.

As I get older, I hate to say that it is events like these that make me realize how fast time flies, and how difficult it often seems to get together with lifetime friends. But this weekend reminded me that no matter how much time flies, true friends are always true.

Duane asked me to speak at their wedding, and I was very honored. I shared two stories about why Duane's friendship has been important to me over the 10 years I've known him. See, I had caddied for Duane for both of his Player Ability Tests (P.A.T.s) and on the first shot of his first PAT at Upper Perk, he snubbed his tee shot. This would have been equivalent to you or I riding a bike our whole life, and then one day we get on the bike, peddle once, and fall over. Duane has always killed his driver, so it was shocking. I remember looking over to see if he was about to erupt. But I think we just smiled and then laughed, and I have always admired Duane for not taking himself to seriously. A good quality to have, an even better quality to have when married.

My second great story was Duane's second PAT, at Moccasin Run, the one he passed. I've caddied a lot of PATs, and in every round, there comes a moment that tests you. For Duane, it was #5, a driveable par 4 that is lined by the road down the left hand side. Duane tags his tee shot, and it heads dead left, and all we hear is a bang. The ball hit a telephone pole and we're not really sure if it stayed in. So we walk up to the ball and finally locate it, not really knowing if it's O.B. (Out of Bounds) but there it is in a nasty lie in the rough, in play. By now the ranger is watching our group, and everyone is waiting for Duane, and you can feel the tension. All Duane does is stick his approach to within 2 feet and drains it for bird. It was restaurant quality, seriously good stuff. But what it reminded me of was that I truly believe Duane looked at his tee shot like "thank god the pole was there to keep it in" rather than "this sucks." Golf, like life, is a state of mind. Lots of us say "don't quit", but that day I got to witness a friend actually do just that. I've always admired that quality about Duane, and as I said that night, "life will always throw you crap. But I've never worried about Duane. He can handle it."

So my final thoughts that I shared that night during the walk down memory lane was that after Duane passed his PAT, I thought I'd feel relief as his caddy. But in fact, what I remember feeling was true happiness for him, because I knew how hard he had worked to get to that point in his life. There's really nothing better than seeing the people you care about experience true joy and success. And that's exactly how I felt watching he and Tracy get married Saturday night.

Congrats again Duane and Tracy!!

The Three Amigos -- A lot of golf between these three

Erin and I, before the Scotch and Sodas (me of course...)

Apparently Dancing for no one ut my laughing wife...What a Fun Wedding!