Have you ever experienced that state of total timelessness, when minutes turn to hours without even noticing? Suddenly you find the sun setting and wonder where has the day gone? I found that place – or, it found me. I didn’t get there

through a substance, a man or another relationship. I didn’t join a cult or shave my head and start chanting. I started golfing!

That’s right – golf – and I absolutely love it!

I bought a set of second-hand women’s clubs at a garage sale two years ago, hoping it would give my dad and me something to do together.

I thought, “If I have clubs, we could hit balls together, and that would give us good-quality Daddy/daughter time.” Of course, they sat in my closet, unused, untouched, for two years … until January, when my best friend, Amy, and her husband asked me to join them for a game: “Hey Melise, wanna do a 9-hole course with us?”

My eyes lit up! I dusted off my second-hand set, still proud of my decision to buy them. I didn’t have a collared shirt so I faked it and just put on a cute, golfer-ish looking outfit, and we headed out. I didn’t do too well, but I did hit the ball and it went relatively straight!

I was hooked from the first time my club made contact with my fluorescent-pink girlie-ball – my first game gift from Amy. Scottie B. recommended I take lessons before playing too much; otherwise, I’d have a lot of bad habits to break.

“If you just play, you’ll do it wrong and when you want to get good, you have to learn all over – it’s like re-breaking bones that weren’t set correctly!”

Ouch! OK – I decided to take lessons. That’s where I met Randy Chang. He let me spend hours practicing, just swinging into a net or putting on the practice green.

It’s worked wonders on my psychological state. I have one of those ADD brains – you know, the kind with thoughts that go every which direction and never shut off! My brain is more charged than the Energizer bunny – it just keeps going and going and going. …I do yoga and mediate; nothing works, except golf. When I am hitting balls, it’s just me and the ball … oh, and the voice of my instructor, saying, “Now that’s a golf swing!”

“Golf’s not a sport,” cried one very obviously studly friend. “Chicks don’t belong on the golf course!” laughed my ex. But let me tell you, anything this mentally challenging is definitely a sport. When you find something that makes time non-existent – that’s special. It might be diving, painting, running, reading, surfing – whatever it is, that’s what life is all about! No drugs needed!

Melisa Uchida is the co-host of “Saturday nights with Steve Bohlen and Melisa Uchida” on KHVH 830am - Saturday from 6pm to 9pm. She can be reached at melisauchida@earthlink.net.