Tom Patri: Time to hit the road for Long Island

TOM PATRI

— Well, that was it! Last Sunday was my last day teaching in paradise for this season. First and foremost, thanks to all who read this column. Special thanks even to those who send me those strongly worded emails after I write a column that gets you fired up.

This is the end of my 12th season teaching in Southwest Florida, and my simple conclusion is we are all pretty blessed to live in this part of the world. We certainly could be in worse places.

This week, after packing up the dogs, the trailer full of teaching aids and all the other junk the TP Golf traveling gypsy show will head north and east up I-95 some 1,300 miles to Eastern Long Island to Friar’s Head and set up shop for a May 17 start. It should be a fun season. Lots of teaching and coaching.

It looks like about between five to seven local and regional senior events. Eastern Long Island also will host the U.S. Women’s Open as well as the Walker Cup both a stone’s throw from my nest. Yes, of course, I plan on trying to attend a bit of both events.

Speaking of the U.S. Women’s Open after a few years of a “time out” Meaghan Francella of the LPGA Tour and I have gotten back together to try to right the ship, so to speak. Meaghan has gone through a few rough seasons on tour, but I feel she has some terrific golf still left in her. Keep your eyes peeled this season. I’m hopeful for a slow and steady return to form for her.

This season provided so many fun moments for me. A few of my juniors won events. Three of my ladies won club championships. I had my first live meeting with five students I had never met from China who had previously only taken instruction from me via my Online Lesson Academy. Isn’t technology crazy? We meet in Orlando and worked on their games “live.”

However, all that being said, the best news was when longtime student David Nadler from Old Collier called me to tell me he was returning to work after a very tough battle against cancer. Well done, David, you went toe to toe and threw the knockout punch.

Next column will come to you from Eastern Long Island nestled between the vineyards, cornfields and some pretty cool golf holes.

Tom Patri gives lessons at the Quarry on Immokalee Road, and is at Friar’s Head in New York from May-December. Patri is a Golf Magazine Top 100 Teacher. Visit Patri’s website at www.tompatri.com, www.facebook.com/TomPatri or email him at tpatri@mindspring.com.

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