I like to play the Dr. Charles Sifford golf course in Charlotte. It was developed as a whites-only course back in the 30’s, but it’s every hacker for himself or herself now. It is only a few blocks away from Charlotte center city, and the skyline can be viewed from a few spots on the course.
Last Wednesday, I got the urge to play, but my usual partner was out of town, so I soloed, as I sometimes do. The course is undergoing some major improvements, and there were temporary greens, scalped out of portions of the fairway near the holes. They weren’t worth putting out on, but the driving and fairway shots were all good, and the course work promised good play ahead. It was hot and getting hotter, though. I had only planned to play nine holes and as I drove my cart up to the ninth hole tee box, I saw something I had never seen on a golf course – a coyote.
He was trotting across the ninth hole fairway in no particular hurry. He even paused a couple of times to look over his shoulder at me. I kept on driving toward him and he eventually reached the woods and disappeared.
Coyotes have made the local news quite frequently in recent weeks. They have apparently reached pest status in the suburban areas of South Charlotte and residents there are concerned about their pets. But here – within sight of Charlotte high-rises and a bare couple of hundred yards from the I-77 interstate? Where do they make their dens? At night do they come out, trot around the empty course and howl at the moon from elevated greens as the flags ripple in the soft evening air?