Thanks for capturing the true essence of ths once "majestic" course. I, too, learned to play golf at Thunderbird. At $12 for 18 holes it was certainly a bargain.
You forgot to mention that, even though they served food inside the clubhouse, they had a catering truck on the side selling tacos and breakfast burritos. However, my friends and I were never brave enough to eat there.
I will never forget how the owner would arbitrarily drive his golfcart up to any hole and tee off. If no-one was in the fairway or on the green, he would continue playing. Otherwise, he'd just pick up his ball and drive to another available tee.
Like your Thunderbird tale. We also have memories of the place, as Grace took some lessons from a woman pro who used the Thunderbird driving range for her teaching. Almost every time she went for a lesson there was an ancient guy hitting balls while keeping a cigarette hanging out of his mouth. The ash on the cigarette grew longer and longer and he kept on hitting, but the ash never fell off. One day I took Grace over there, and when I got out of the car I found a live bullet lying on the ground. Now THAT'S Thunderbird ambience.
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