But Karen's son Victor had introduced her to the game/sport and she really seemed to like it, so I reluctantly agreed to give it a try. She gave me a Valkyrie driver disc and a putter and off we went. As expected, I was terrible.
We started at DeLaveaga which is a world-renown championship course - probably way out of our league. But we stuck with it, playing most days after work for an hour or two. Somewhere along the line, we played the courses at Black Mouse, in the redwoods in Felton, and at Kirkwood, in the Sierra. The beauty of these courses convinced me that disc golf is a reason to go hiking - most of the courses are in semi-remote areas and it can be a decent workout to play them.
On our next visit to France we brought a few discs with us, ready to play. I printed the map of the course at Tarnos, located in Parc de la Baye, and Karen and I found it after searching for quite a while. Unfortunately, we couldn't find any tees or markers for targets, and even worse, most of the park was under water after heavy rains. We were discouraged. To stay in practice, we found some open space areas in Anglet near the beach and practiced our throws with imagined targets.
On our next trip to France, we took a portable basket. Portable is probably overstated. I called it luggable. It weighs over 25 pounds and is awkward to carry when set up. We played in the park at Anglet but it quickly grew boring and with other people walking though, difficult. Searching the web, I found the website for Disc Golf Sud Landes and saw that I had been updated. We went back to Tarnos, hoping to see other players. We did our best to play the parts of the course we could identify from the map, but never played more than 8 or 9 holes, many of which we just made up. At this point, Karen was just beginning her hip rehabilitation and was limited in how far she could walk.
He showed us their baskets which couldn't have weighed more than a pound or two and explained to us that they had tried to put in a fixed course with permanent baskets but that the baskets had been damaged and usually stolen for the metal. One of the other players explained that Jean had designed their current portable baskets - impressive since even though they're so lightweight, they don't fall over when a fast moving disc hits them.
As many of you know if you read My Miraculous Wife - Learning French, last week members of the club invited us to a Landaise lunch where they fed us duck confit, salad Landaise with local white asparagus, grilled chipirons (calamari), magret de canard (duck filets), a fantastic potato dish, great deserts, and of course lots of local wine. We had an incredible time.
Disc golf with the Disc Golf Sud Landes club is the most fun we've ever had playing disc golf! If you find yourself in southwestern France and play disc golf, you won't be disappointed if you show up at Parc de la Baye in Tarnos at 9:30 on a Sunday morning.
My next post will describe our disc golf experience at Le Mourtis and Sauveterre-de-Rouergue.