Friday, April 30, 2021 (Court Day #372)

I had one of my staff close and I left work early after closing time. While driving directly to Skypark, I got a text from Alain asking if I was feeling sick after my second vaccine shot or if I was still going to play. I told him I was on my way to the courts. I arrived at 6:25 p.m. to find all the parking spots full, so I parked along the wood fence then walked in, following Olga and her husband Oleg who arrived just before me.

I have no idea who these people are. Pickleball is growing.

I go into a game with Mark D., Sharyl, and Debbie. I was not playing the best, but my play did improve over the course of the night. Sharyl had invited Kristin L.—Sharyl asked first—and Kristin showed up before too long. When Alain arrived all the courts were full, but I saw that he got into a game on his own after not too long.

Eye Protection Swap

I played in sunglasses until it got too dark, then I switched to clear plastic safety glasses. The ones I bought from Stuart a couple of years ago. I don’t know why I dislike those but don’t mind sunglasses. But no matter, I make a choice to protect my eyes! That ricochet volley a few years ago that sent the ball into my eye socket isn’t easily forgotten!

Uh, Double Bounce Rule

Alain and I played a game against Adrian and a Scotts Valley-er, Gary. It was going to be Adrian and me, but Gary suggested Adrian and I split up to make it more fair. And Gary was right! It made for a much more balanced game. Alain hit two or three shots where he stepped in after the serve and faulted by not allowing the ball to bounce twice. Oops.

Kristin and I had a really good game against Sharyl and Adrian. We ended up losing 14-12, but it was a great battle.

Mr. Spin

I had another game against Sharyl, she called me “Mr. Spin”. Yes, I have some spin shots down even playing lefty. I had at least half a dozen shots returned into the net tonight after I sent them over with significant spin.

The courts gradually cleared out as the evening progressed. Sharyl turned on the lights . . . she pulled out a pair of pliers since one of the light knobs is missing. And, as Adrian learned later, one of the knobs needs to be turned the wrong way—instead of with the timer marks—to work! Sounds like the City of Scotts Valley needs to make some repairs!


Oleg and I played a game against Olga and Debbie. Oleg opted to play lefty too—he’s a former open tennis player—which made for a fairer game. I was reflecting earlier to Sharyl while waiting on the bench about how much better Olga is. She was someone few wanted to play with early on. Sharyl mentioned how she’d played against Olga in a tournament or two and she is a tough opponent. Olga has come a long way. Oleg paid me a compliment about my lefty backhand, that was nice to hear. It’s also nice to have Oleg back on a court and playing a bit after his heart surgery a couple of years ago.

The last game of the night was Adrian and me against Mark D. and Kristin. It was a fun matchup. I was trying to remember if we won or lost . . . wins are more memorable, so I was thinking, maybe we lost. Then I remembered we did lose when Adrian hit the last shot into the net. That’s not to say the loss was his fault, I made my share of errors. In the middle of that game I got a call from my daughter, then a call from my wife . . . two calls sounded urgent so I called my wife back. They were having trouble getting the DVD player to play on the TV—my daughter had out-of-state guests—so did my best to quickly walk them through it! Success! I returned and apologized and thanked my ‘courtmates’ for the interruption.

When the game ended, Kristin was especially ready to call it a night, so we did. 8:57 p.m. then I was on my way and got home at a time which did not prompt a “what’s wrong?” question!

Number of days on a court: 372
Number of total hours: 1,056.5

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