My Golfing Brigadoon

Furman University Music Department presents "Brigadoon"

Many years ago, in the pre-GPS era, I was driving somewhere west of Ann Arbor, for a reason I no longer remember when I passed a golf course off a small road in the middle of farm country.

There was a small white clubhouse behind a small blacktop parking lot and behind that, fairways that ran up and down a small rise. It looked relatively open, with just a smattering of trees between the fairways. A gem, I thought. Green and tidy. I thought then, as now, that the locals could count themselves lucky to have such a friendly looking place to play.

I slowed a bit, taking a long look, and then drove on. I made a mental note to return, and probably even wrote the name of course on a scrap of now long-lost paper.

In teh ensuing years, I have often thought of that course, but have never been able to remember its name, or to figure out where I was. From time to time, I have scoured Google and Bing maps looking for a place that matches my memory. It has been to no avail. I am sure that I have exhausted the possibilities in the Jackson area, having played most if not all the public courses. I don’t think I was far west as Battle Creek. I also have looked closer to the Ohio border. Nothing.

The course may be too insignificant to merit mention or mapping. Or—as is likely—it has closed. Or perhaps it never existed at all—a memory that I really don’t have.

In the musical Brigadoon, an American on a hunting trip in Scotland gets lost and encounters a highland village that—as it turns out—appears just once every hundred years. Returning to the village on any other day, a traveler would find just wilderness.

That course may be my own personal Brigadoon. It was there, but is not to appear again, except in memory.

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