My Mother and Step-Father have a fine view of the first hole on a golf course in Sedona, AZ. They have a beautiful view of the red rocks that pepper that famous area. When I was there visiting, I decided to go for a walk on the golf course. Sunset was near, the golfers had gone home and a walk on the course was something I had done several times with family. This time I went alone.
I headed toward hole 2, then 3 and on until I got to the restrooms. It was getting dark so I turned around and started walking back. I could see lights illuminating the back of the houses on the course and I started thinking about a murder mystery I could write using my setting. I could see the people inside their homes and my imagination was running wild. I thought I knew where my Mother lived. I looked for the big cactus in her backyard but I didn’t see it. I kept walking. I soon realized that I was lost. My Mother had a great view of the golf course, but it was impossible to see her house when you were actually on the course as it sat back from the other houses. It was only getting darker.
I continued walking until I got to the clubhouse. I knew where I was. I figured I’d just walk the long way home, down the road. The road was asphalt and there were no sidewalks. I thought my Mother lived 4 streets down, on the right. I continued on, to what I thought was the 4th street. It was not my Mother’s street. I became confused and concerned. I went up to one of the houses and a sensor light came on. I knocked on the door, but no one answered. I walked away, turned around and started heading back toward the clubhouse. It was now pitch black outside. There were no street lights on the street. I started to think: “This is how girls go missing, just like this, alone, at night.” I started to get tense and scared. I continued walking, worrying about my situation.
By the time I got to the club house I was pretty well freaked out. The club house was dark. I went up to the glass door, peeked in, and I could see, way in the back, 4 men sitting around a table. I knocked on the door. One of the men came to the door and opened it. I asked if there was a phone I could use. He said there was. I called my Mother, but no one answered. No one was there to come rescue me. I wondered where in the world they could have gone. They never went anywhere at night. I called again. No answer. There was no help for me there. I didn’t know what to do. My Dad was an Eagle Scout and he was always teaching me preparedness. “When you’re lost, stay where you are until someone finds you.” I knew this was not going to happen. I had to get home. I felt shame for getting lost, at night, on this scary road with no street lights. What would my Father think.
One of the men from the table came up to me and asked if I was having a problem. He was a nice looking, older man. He was a stranger. He seemed nice, but he was still a stranger. I told him that I’d been out walking, that it had gotten too dark to see and I’d gotten lost. My parents weren’t home and I didn’t know what to do. He offered to take me home. I paused to think it over, then said: “Yes, please.”
When we arrived at the house, my Mother was out front, running back and forth in the driveway, in her bathrobe. This is why they didn’t answer the phone. They were certain something foul had happened to me. My Step-Father was out standing on the porch watching my frantic Mother. We came driving up and my Mother rushed the car, panic written all over her body. Relief swept through me. I thanked the man who brought me home and so did my Step-Father who actually knew of him. He was kind of a local legend. My Mother threw her arms around me and began to cry. She thought something had happened to me. Something had. I had learned my lesson. Don’t go out walking by yourself at night if you don’t have to.
All my Step-Father could say of the man who brought me home was: “He got a hole in one on our golf course. He’s famous in town. He got a hole in one.” At least, I thought, he was a good guy. He had helped this damsel in distress.