Life is short – so I spend it doing the things I love. Playing golf, all things food and travelling!
My love affair with golf started as my fourteen year marriage wound up.
In August 2013, I played my first round at Belfast Highland Greens, Belfast on Prince Edward Island, Canada. I shot 118 on this nine hole course, had no idea how to hold a club and to be honest was kind of playing like I would play cricket. Not how you play golf, clearly.
I was moving to Prince Edward Island early in 2014 and I needed a new sport – I decided golf was for me. Even though a few people told me at 37 I was a bit too old to learn. Not the best advice, I am not too old for anything! I am determined, tenacious and to be honest hate being crap at anything. So golf it was!
Working at a golf resort kick started my play and before my shift I would hit the range whacking four hundred balls. If I wasn’t happy with my last twenty or so I would move to the next station and hit another hundred. The members thought I was crazy. Perhaps I am a little bit nuts. But I love it! Nothing is more satisfying than getting a good solid whack on a ball, as every fellow golfer will attest.
I left Prince Edward Island in October 2014 and I played Belfast again just before I left and shot 54. Not a bad improvement in a year.
I met a lot of people at the range, guests at the resort and members of the golf club all wanting to give advice and “how to”. I ignored ninety five percent of what I was told and instead signed up and had a lesson with the pro, Anne Chouinard.
Instant improvement – I had never hit an iron so well. To say I was happy is an understatement. I may have done a happy dance in my excitement. I practiced everything Anne taught me and had another lesson with her before I left the country.
Under her advice and a couple of members I actually listen to, I went and got fitted for clubs and bought my favourite purchase in many years, a set of Adams S Series clubs.
I played three rounds, had my new clubs customized and replaced the driver with a G20 twelve degree Ping, which I love dearly.
I bought myself a hard travel club case and as winter was coming, I flew to Australia, and so began this journey of golf, food and travel.
I moved to the Southern Highlands in New South Wales and after researching all the local clubs I decided on Mt Broughton Golf and Country Club in Sutton Forest as it had the best practice facilities and I like practicing as much as I like playing.
I became a member and signed up for another five lessons with the pro, Davyd Reeves.
I flew to Scotland in April 2015 and played at eleven courses and have now played forty four courses across Canada, Australia, the US and Scotland.
I am totally addicted to golf. I am reading, watching all things golf and want to continue playing as many courses as I can, as I travel around the world.
I am unreservedly happy on a golf course and will be working for my next airline ticket so I can continue to pursue my pleasure of golfing and eating around the world.
October 2016 – Update
It has been over two years since I started golfing and have now played 94 courses in ten countries. Not a bad effort (if I do say so myself).
While I was golfing on the north coast of Ireland in April 2014 I had an epiphany and started a nonprofit – Fairways – sponsoring junior golfers all over the world who cannot play purely for financial reasons.
Since then we have sponsored ten juniors on PEI, Canada, five juniors in India, one in Nepal and are helping set up a junior golf program in Bolivia.
This is all I am working towards. I am fundraising and working part time in order to cover the costs of the programs we are running and working hard to achieve exactly that.