Masters trip fulfilled dream

I would like to express my gratitude toward the Augusta National Golf Club for playing host to a national lottery drawing for the 2012 Masters Tournament.

For someone who had little chance of ever attending the Masters, this lottery was my only shot. I have had rotten luck when it comes to raffles and lotteries, so I did not hold out much hope for my number coming up.

Last May, a golfing buddy sent me the website link to the ticket application page. I was skeptical to sign up, given the history and notoriety associated with a coveted Masters ticket. Could one really be this close to glimpsing the hallowed grounds of Augusta?

Hoping for a miracle, I submitted my application and made a note in my calendar to check back in three months. When an alert came up on my screen to check the status of my application, I nervously logged in to find that I had indeed won tickets – to the Sunday round! Two golden tickets to the big show, for a reasonable $75 each.

This is when the fun began: My wife and I had planned on moving to New York around April 2012. Our moving date carried great significance as soon as we won these tickets. For the next few months, we hatched a plan to drive to New York so we could attend the Masters on Sunday. We spent a week on the road, driving from Dallas to New York, with our foray into Augusta as the highlight of the trip. My wife keeps a blog, Living with Healthy Hunger, and wrote a beautiful record of our adventure in Augusta.

On a single Sunday, we were able to partake in all that Augusta has to offer. For that, I thank the members of Augusta, as they gave me an opportunity to experience what has been a longtime dream. The experience has turned my wife into an instant golf fan, and given us many shared memories for years to come.

Billy Tolson

New York City

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