Thursday, February 18, 2010

Fore! ... (Don't Say I Didn't Warn You)

My first serious relationship was during my first year at University. He played golf ... so did his sister ... so did his father. Apparently, they were all pretty good golfers ... 72 ... is that good? During the course of our relationship, his family would go off to some of the nicest golf courses around the US, and outside of the US as well ... Pebble Beach, the multiple courses in Palm Springs, even St. Andrews, the home of golf, in Scotland. I was usually invited to come along and learn to play. Something I never did because I was too scared of embarrassing myself, or worst yet, injuring someone ... namely, me. So I had plenty of opportunity to learn. I even gave myself the assignment of photographing the University Golf team so I could experience walking the course during a game to try understand what the draw of golf is.

In January, I helped with a hole-in-one fundraiser at the golf course in Glenorchy. During the down time, I would pick up a club and try my hand at putting. It was then that I realized, hmmm, there is something here. Maybe I can see why people get hooked. And when people watching me started to say, "How long have you been golfing? You look like you know what you're doing.", I decided it was time to give it a go.

So yesterday afternoon, I took my first ever golf lesson with the golf pro at Millbrook Resort in Arrowtown, just outside of Queenstown. It was only half an hour, but wow, what you can learn in 30 minutes! The Pro explained that we'd be taking baby steps in learning because it can get too overwhelming in the beginning. It was fun! But ... I had no idea how much technique is really involved. And I had no idea how much your body gets stretched. I got home last night feeling slightly stiff and my back aching. Don't ever let anyone tell you that golf isn't very physical or isn't exercise or fitness!

I actually hit the ball ... multiple times. And at least one of those times it was a pretty good whack, almost an effortless feel, which I understand is how it is supposed to be. I think I'm going for another lesson next week. But I'll have to try to fit in some practice prior to then, because as the Pro told me, "Another lesson won't do you any good unless you practice."

Golfers, birds, tree and anyone in the surrounding area ... beware!

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