Wednesday, July 05, 2006
golf on the fourth of July ...
Steve and the boys picked me up a little after 8 a.m. We were going to play a different course this time, one that’s more challenging than Nimitz, the Guam International Country Club in Dededo. There’s a lot more water and, for the most part, tighter fairways and a lot of bi-level greens, which means tougher putts.
We get there and find out that because of the early morning rain, and golfers who didn’t want to go out in the rain, that there’s a long back up on the starting tees. We start on the south side and have to wait for four groups to tee off before us, and the middle two are both slow and sucky golfers. We end up teeing off about a half hour late. That delay was indicative of the rest of the day -- at Nimitz, we usually finish in about 4 to 4-1/2 hours, even with a half hour lunch break. It took us a good 5-1/2 hours to finish 18 yesterday, and that’s with no break for lunch (we stopped off and had pizza on the way home).
It was still a little drizzly, but we only had one brief spurt of any kind of sustained rain, and that only lasted about 8 minutes, and it was while we were waiting to tee off on a hole, so although it looked dreary for most of the day, it wasn’t as bad as it could have been.
Steve had a great front nine, with several pars. It took me longer to get my game together; I didn’t have a par until the 8th hole. But on the back nine, I really had things going for the first several holes. After five holes, I was only two over par. I was driving it good and in the fairway, and I was really sticking my short irons from 130 yards and in, which I’ve been having problems with of late. If the guy before me on the sand trap on the third hole had raked the bunker, I would have been able to save par there, that asshole. Missed sinking a 15-foot left-to-right breaking putt by less than an inch on the next hole, a long par-5 that I reached in regulation. *sigh*
My game came apart two holes later, on the next par-5. After two shots, I was just 75 yards from the green, looking to be on in regulation and putting for birdie again. But I skulled the shot, which went over the green, and it took me another three shots to get on the green. You know it’s a bad hole when you hit driver, 3-wood, pitching wedge, pitching wedge, pitching wedge, pitching wedge and then two putt. Yep, triple bogey after being 75 yards away after two shots. The golf gods were laughing long and hard.
Got things together on the next hole with a long drive, but on the backswing of my second shot, my cell phone rang and I pulled my shot into the boonies. Turned out it was someone who had no business calling me on a matter that had nothing to do with me on my day off. Thanks for costing me two more strokes.
Got par on the next hole, a tough par-3 over water, but then hit two balls into two different bodies of water on the 18th hole to finish with another triple bogey.
Still, I managed to break 100, shooting 97, but I really should have been in the low 90s. Part of it, I think, was having to wait so long between shots because of the slow play -- it’s really hard to get into rhythm that way -- but mainly there were a few mental errors, and that damned call, that led to extra strokes. Bleah.
All in all though, it’s hard to beat time spent on the course with a good friend and my godsons.
After I got home, I took a shower, lazed about a little bit, then popped into work for an hour or so.
My mistake was going to the supermarket afterward; ran into three poker buddies on the way to a game and ended up going there instead of home. My luck on the table continued and I lost my ass … but what the hell; I get paid on Friday.