Not only do my congratulations go to the 2016 champion, Ariya Jutanugarn but the volunteers, Golf Canada and everyone involved in running the event should be commended.
I have had a wonderful week. I connected with countless golfers, made some great contacts for Fairways, played 50 holes of golf, had hundreds of golf chats and did I mention the amazing golf I watched all week?
It was very cold this morning and perhaps I hadn’t dressed appropriately for the weather -to be honest I didn’t pack appropriately for the weather in Calgary. I was shivering in the cold on the golf cart ride up to the media centre and was looking forward to a hot cup of tea to warm up.
I stood in front of the vent blowing hot air and looked at the layers all the other media were wrapped in. They’d clearly been to Calgary before.
I sent a couple of emails for Fairways and have confirmed I will be Bolivia bound early next year – that is another story altogether.
After grabbing something to eat I headed to the range to watch the warm up of the women and get some tips on what drills to practice.
I chatted to some of the volunteers as I breezed through snapping photos and headed to the 18th for my daily Birdie Board photo.
I was visually assaulted by Paul in his red and white ensemble. He would have blended in without notice had he been there on Friday for Red & White Day, however today he was unique.
I complimented him on his choice of pant and requested a photo – the first of which we decided Steve didn’t take well as you couldn’t experience the whole garish look as he was cut off at the knees.
I ended up laughing with these two as eight groups played through. Paul was quite entertaining at one stage doing a bit of a chicken dance while he bird called to his buddies above.
We had some good chat going on and separated ways when Steve’s stomach was eating it’s own lining.
As we turned to walk away a Mountie marched towards us and I admit, I demanded a photo. Can’t miss that opportunity. I then decided that I needed a photo with both Paul and the mountie – who was born on PEI.
She noticed my jacket (I was representing this week in my PEI’s Finest Golf jacket) and we got chatting about my adopted home.
Poor Steve was starving and yet we had him take more photos for us.
As we waved our goodbyes, I stopped by Adam from Golf Town for our daily golf chat then headed off to see what was for lunch.
Burgers on the menu today not as good as the risotto yesterday but I wasn’t complaining as I too, was now hungry.
I have eaten a lot this week. I have walked most of it off but I have eaten foods I haven’t eaten in more than two years.
After devouring my naked burger (bun less) I then grabbed a couple of cookies a cup of tea and sat at my desk checking emails and chatting with Edwin in Bolivia.
I was watching the golf on television and saw the top group were playing the 9th so I headed to the 10th to snap their tee shots.
As they played through I wandered to the other side of the 18th stopping for a golf chat with one of the Golf Canada staff I have seen all week but hadn’t spoken with, before squeezing my way beside the announcer on the edge of the green.
I took a couple of photos of the soldier saluting the flag and watched Aussie Karrie Webb not only finish with a birdie and make $5,000 for charity but card the best round of the day at -8.
I lapped the 18th and stopped chatting with Wade one of the volunteers, an electrician who took holidays so he could volunteer for the week.
We discussed our mutual passion for golf, I told him about Fairways and he asked for my contact details. I gave him one of my cards and he told me he is going to tell all his golfer mates what we are doing.
Perfect! That is what we need. Share our story so we can sponsor more underprivileged juniors globally.
I then passed Adam for a final golf chat before I retired to the media centre to tweet the afternoon away.
The calibre of the golf on display was outstanding. Japanese golfer Ayako Uehara got a hole in one on the 8th to match the hole in one she got yesterday on the 11th.
Two aces in two days surely that was some kind of record?
Scott Simmons, CEO of Golf Canada, came in all suited up ready for the trophy presentation and sat beside me chatting with Garrett Ball also from Golf Canada (MD of Finance & Administration) and I had a quick chat with them before going back to my tweeting.
When Scott headed off to shake hands and award trophies I got chatting to Garrett. He read at the Fairway Foodie label on my desk and ask who I worked for. He got a quick synopsis of my golf career (the whole two years of it) and we went from there. I think perhaps I exhausted him telling him what we have achieved with Fairways in four months.
He told me he feels a little lazy and also that golf needs more people like me.
What an amazing compliment!
Garrett also said that they have some clubs at Golf Canada that we might be able to access for my Bolivia program and that he will connect me with the Martin Barnard the CEO of Golf Canada Foundation.
As I messaged to Jeremy (COO of Fairways), it is lucky I talk a lot.
By this time Ariya Jutanugarn was holing out, matching the -23 best round record set by So Yeon Ryu in 2014.
As Ariya was heading into the media centre I didn’t go green side but stayed chatting with Garrett and as he left I went back to tweeting while I waited for the 2016 champion to arrive.
I love Ariya’s attitude to golf – new attitude that is. She said that while last year she missed 10 cuts in a row she changed her thinking to only focus on what is under her control.
Last week she was planning on withdrawing from the tournament due to injury but on arrival in Canada her knee felt ok Monday and Tuesday so she decided to play.
After winning $337,500 I am sure she is pleased she played.
After winning five of her last ten tournaments, the key to her success is simply “…the main thing is to be happy on the course”.
While I may not be a golfer of her calibre she certainly shares my attitude – I am unreservedly happy with a fairway under my feet, regardless of how I am hitting them.