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Day 3 begins with the incessant sound of an alarm going off, “but this can’t be….. I feel like I just closed my eyes.” Last night there was another after-party in the villas and I’m starting to see that this is going to be a common theme of each day’s final hours. The excitement of it being the day of the golf tournament shocks my body into a frenzied state of anxious focus…
“Steve, Steve, it’s game day!” I yell, but he is already two steps ahead of me. See for Steve, he has the added pressure of playing in the tournament and the competitive fire burns strong and early on this beautiful Saturday morning! We rush to get dressed and fill our stomachs with a delicious breakfast buffet at the Viceroy. Before you know it, the celebs are out in the lobby and our rides have arrived. The weather was beautiful which I took to be a “good Omen.” Little did I know, Mother Nature had a few tricks up her sleeve.
We arrive at Temenos Golf Course around 8:30 am and people start heading to the driving range to warm up. I had a smile on my face that I couldn’t wipe off. The planners from KC You There walked up to Kelly Perine (actor/comedian….hilarious comedian) and me while we were sharing some laughs and asked if we would say something for the camera. Kelly, being the great guy that he is says, “Let’s get a sleeve of Omen balls real quick.” They start filming and Kelly pulls out one of the balls and does what Kelly does best -be funny… really funny! He takes a ball pretends to bite into it as he says, “Mmmm, even tastes like it goes straighter.” Needless to say, you can’t get much better than that!
Then as the players and celebs are getting into their golf carts for more photos I take a second to notice that although it is sunny and beautiful outside…….oh no….It’s WINDY!! (Imagine me with the McCauley Caulkin face from Home Alone).
Well, now I’m in a panic, as we are debuting the OmenTM to all these people and there are winds that could push an Airbus off course, on a course with fairways that make a pencil look wide. In my mind I was running through all the criticisms in the world before anyone had even taken a shot…..”OK, deep breath Bret” I tell myself. After realizing I was probably being dramatic enough to make me a shoo-in for a role on Broadway, I remembered something…..we have “The OmenTM”. I knew that the product we’ve developed has been tested time and time again and it does what it claims. There was nothing to be concerned with. These conditions and the difficulty of course is exactly why this ball was developed. Now it was a waiting game. Waiting for hours until everyone starts arriving back at the clubhouse. And the verdict? They love the OmenTM!
Karina, Curt, Chris and Lindsay from KC You There are telling me that celebs and guests alike are giving the OmenTM praise. Those words were music to my ears. As people returned, one after another said how much they enjoyed the ball! At that moment I knew that all the work up to that point was worth it. Steve arrives back at the clubhouse with Roberto Clemente Jr., as well as Lenny and Byron from Uptown and Vibe magazine. It was smiles all around as we enjoyed our moment in the sun….pun intended 🙂
Let the celebration begin……as everyone enjoyed some food and drinks, I was eager to start getting some of these OmenTM balls signed for our Celebrity Charity Hall of Fame page. It’s harder than you think to have a conversation with someone when there are cameras all around. On the one hand, you want to be engaged in the conversation you are having and on the other, it’s hard not to think, “Are they shooting my good side? How’s the lighting? Do these shorts make me look fat?” In all seriousness though it was quite a thrill and I am grateful for all the signatures and support at the tournament. I was finally able to breathe a deep sigh of relief!
From there, we hopped our sun roasted butts back on the bus and headed back to the Viceroy. Now I have to tell you that I am a Buffalo sports nut and on the way back I was sitting with Kelly Perine and Hall of Fame Buffalo Bills running back, Thurman Thomas. I’m sure I nearly talked his ear off about the glory days of the Bills when he, Bruce Smith, Jim Kelly, Andre Reed, and so many others played together. It was incredible to hear stories from the perspective of someone who was a part of the events and moments that I remember as clearly as if they had happened yesterday.
We arrived back at the hotel and after a quick workout with Steve and some Sushi at Sunset Bay bar at the hotel, we made our way to Ruben’s villa for a nighttime pool party. After a long and tiring day, it was the perfect ending to another great day in Anguilla!
Yaaaaaaawwwwwwnnnnnn! It was a yawn for the ages and it wasn’t because I was tired….it was because I was rested. Finally, I was able to sleep in! As I washed away my sleepy seeds and generously applied some sunscreen, I took a moment to reflect on the previous days and nights. I thought to myself, “I could get used to this”. You see, today’s event was a local boat race. All the celebs and sponsors headed to a beautiful private villa on the beach to watch a competition the likes of which I have never seen.
This wasn’t the friendly sailboat race that you would see in the States. No, no, no – it is a fierce, no-holds barred race between the locals. In Anguilla, sailing is the most popular sport and pride means everything. There were moments where the boats nearly collided and were so close that you could see team members throwing fists at one another as their vessels seemed as though they were one. Side by side, wave after wave and finally a winner emerges. It was really quite spectacular and made me look at sailing in a whole different light…..and that light was that if I ever decided to start racing sail boats, well let’s just say I think I’ll stay in the States!
That night was most of the celebs’ final evening on the island, so we all met at Sunset Bay again for one final dinner together and some group shots. We toasted with champagne and dined on sushi. I couldn’t believe how fast the trip had gone by. I honestly felt like I spent a month with everyone. Looking around, I felt humbled. I was surrounded by people that had every reason to have a big ego or an attitude and I couldn’t find one of them that actually did. As the night wore down we all talked about doing this again next year and that it would be like a family reunion. Steve and I made some great friends here and it was going to be sad to see them go but memories were created that I will most certainly never forget and I thank each and every one of them for that!