As I stride into my 40’s, I do so with pleasure.
My last few months have been a whirlwind as I continue to build Fairways with the help of my COO, Jeremy.
It has been a lot of work and every cent I have made since April has gone into it but really, it is only money. My credit cards are not quite maxed out and I do have work lined up when I return to Canada in May, so it is not all bad.
We are slowly getting sponsorship money in and I am sure it will continue to grow.
As long as I have a roof over my head and food in my belly, I am happy as there are many others with less.
I look at the world and the swirl of chaos that seems to be growing and I am thankful I am in Bolivia for two months helping with a junior golf clinic.
I can only hope that together we recognise the similarities between us and forget about the differences.
I left Canada in September, had a brief stop in LA, followed by a week in India and then spent three months in Australia catching up with family and friends.
I visited friends in LA then had a spot of golf business and it was all about the golf in India. Australia was a mix of golf, family and friends.
I returned to Australia earlier than planned as my sister, Amber, was getting married. It was a beautiful celebration of love and I am pleased to consider, not only Andrew but his entire family as part of ours.
I got a job through Jack Newton Junior Golf and earned enough money to keep my head above water and my bills paid while I continued to spend most of my time working on Fairways.
I was based at Carla and Zac’s farm in Balmoral Village and did laps in and out of the city pursuing golf business.
I did recognise the fact (as did many others in my life) that I do not have a good work/life balance and I need to ensure I take time for me.
I think I have this sorted now.
We celebrated the launch of Fairways at Pymble Golf Club with a wonderful day of golf and we connected with golf in Nepal. I attended the NSW and the Australian Open, where I had media accreditation and I made a lot of new golfing friends.
I celebrated the love of Ric and Emma and golfed, golfed and golfed.
It was the first Christmas in ten years that all my sisters were in the one country so mum was delighted and hosted a wonderful christmas. We had an Irish contingent amongst us and it was lovely meeting Andy’s (my sister Verity’s fiancé) friends from back home.
We laughed, we cried, we celebrated and we played a spot of volleyball.
I then headed down the south coast for six nights with my closest friends, who I consider family. It was here I spent the most nights in one place in three months – sharing a tent.
We celebrated Carla’s 40th and brought in the New Year.
The wonderful women from bookclub threw a birthday dinner for me and I then had a small gathering at my mothers for my 40th before I left Australia for Hawaii.
I had decided to take myself to Hawaii for my 40th as it happened to coincide with the Sony Open.
I spent a week in Honolulu making some wonderful new friends (who I will see again next year). I had media accreditation at the Sony Open and spent a week talking all things golf and am now working with some people in Hawaii to get more children golfing.
Not only did I play my 100th golf course in 2 1/2 years on my 40th birthday, I gave myself the gift of returning to Hawaii for my birthday each year from now until I drop.
Best present ever!!!!!!!
I will spend a week in Maui for the Tournament of Champions, a week in Oahu for the Sony Open and a week in Kauai just for me.
I spent four nights in Kauai. I made some amazing connections and spent a day of pure pleasure exploring the island on the back of a motorbike.
I ate a multitude of fresh produce from Chris’ garden and while he wouldn’t let me mow the lawns, he did let me wield a machete cutting down bananas. His garden is an oasis of fruit, vegetables and herbs and I cannot wait until I return next year (I have already given him my dates).
I swam, golfed, cooked, read and ate before I returned to Honolulu for a few nights catching up with my friends, golfing and learning about the spirituality of Hawaii.
It was then I flew to Bolivia.
Currently I am sitting in the office at El Dorado Country Club in Santa Cruz, while Carlito and Josemaria giggle behind me making squeaking farting noises on an office chair.
I am in Bolivia for two months helping Edwin Fernandez fulfil his golfing dream. We have lots of ideas and we are not only putting proposals together we will be travelling for a week to Cochabamba, La Paz, Oruro, Uyuni and Potosi.
It is mostly about golf business but I will be riding a bicycle down the Death Road thanks to Elissa, Damien and Brian.
The owner of the golf course is hosting me in an apartment in Santa Cruz and has made a car available for the duration of my stay. I can’t believe the generosity but they cannot believe I have come here to help promote golf in Bolivia for two months.
My Spanish is not great but each day I learn new words and am slowly getting better. I have only been here six days so I hope by the end of March when I head to Ireland that my Spanish is much improved.
I reflect back on the last few years of my life and cannot quite work out how I got to Bolivia nor how I fell in love with golf, and yet here I am.
I am pursuing my passions and have managed to combine golf and travel while helping underprivileged juniors.
How lucky am I?
Now, I think I will practice Spanish with Carlito and Josemaria.