Thursday, 9 April 2015


Golfing devotees may pooh-pah me. Cheaping out, eh? You can't even play a full round? Bring on the guffaws, but sorry everyone, I make absolutely no apologies. I have dreamed for a full year of once again playing twilight golf at my favourite course - the breathtaking Rancho Mañana.

For the clarification of non-golfers, twilight golf is named as such because rounds begin after 3:30 in the afternoon; as many holes as possible are played until the sun sets and twilight's darkness descends or, as happened to us yesterday evening, the powerful sprinkler systems chillingly spew forth. Cheaper? Of course, because completion of a full eighteen holes is impossible. Do I like twilight golf because of the reduced cost? Not really. I love twilight golf for all of the wrong non-golfing reasons. There! I admitted it.

Twilight golf, for me, is all about good friends and sensations. Ascending the golf cart paths into the hills, one immediately feels welcome late afternoon breezes dissipate the day's heat. I lift my face to the cool air and sweet desert scents.

Shadow and light contrasts afford stunning views over the gorgeous Sonoran Desert. Every object on the course, sand traps and water hazards alike, are enhanced by the lowering sun. Mountains, in the background, soften and mute their daytime colours, creating a dramatic shadowy backdrop.

Slanting Rays cast elongated shadows of golfers, green's flags and saguaros alike. Perhaps my game would improve is my arms were actually as long as those possessed by my shadow persona. I can dream, can't I?

It is usually by the ninth hole, when I can finally enjoy the privilege of witnessing daytime's mighty sun as it balances on Black Mountain's rim creating a glowing finale to another Sonoran Desert day before bowing off to descending twilight.

Does it end there? Well, the golf perhaps, but not the experience. Now is time to enjoy a meal at Rancho Mañana's charming Tonto Bar and Grill. Overlooking the tenth fairway and green, torches pierce the darkness, heaters reduce the desert's nighttime chill, golfers chatter and laugh, a glass of wine is savoured with good friends and another twilight game of golf is complete. Yup! Twilight golf, for me, is all about friendship and sensations and I love it!

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