First Par

I’ve been so busy that I haven’t had a chance to get out on the course since my last post, but yesterday I had the opportunity to go test out my new clubs (thanks, Gerald!).  Stuart’s parents came along, too, and it was the first time I  had played with a group.  We had a great day on the course and the weather couldn’t have been better.  It was cool and overcast for most of our round; the sun finally came out while we were on the fairway at six, but the temperature was still in the low 80s (a relative cold front considering the last few weeks in the Crooked Letter).

I was nervous stepping up to the tee box on one.  I had two new pairs of eyes watching me and I had a hard time concentrating on my swing because of it.  My first three tee shots on one (what?) were terrible, and I was lucky there was no one behind us. I finally got over my nerves and hit the ball more than 30 feet.

I struggled against over swinging for most of our round and my putting, while getting better, is still horrible.  But I had a moment of glory on the tee box at five, and thought: This is what it’s all about. This is why golfers spend years and years playing even though they swear they hate the game; to hit that one, utterly beautiful, usually elusive, perfect shot. 

The fifth hole is a par 3, 116 yard shot (from the ladies tees).  There are two bunkers to the left of the green, which slopes down and to the right.  Here’s a picture in case my description didn’t seem accurate enough.  Also, you can take a virtual tour of the Ole Miss Golf Course by following this link.

I’m not sure what happened as I walked up to the tee box.  I was trying to remember all the things that I should do: Keep my head down. Don’t over swing. Keep your left arm straight.  Don’t try to crush it, just make contact.  Then I teed up the ball, took my stance, and SMOKED IT.  The lady who hadn’t ever hit a ball more than about 75 yards overshot the green by TWO FEET!  I was still about 30 feet away from the hole, but I two putted and made my first real par on a hole of golf!

I certainly don’t think I’m ready to join the LPGA Tour or anything (and if I had thought that after 5, holes 7 through 9 would surely have put me back in my place as a hacker), but now I’m hooked.  I’m looking forward to undershooting drives and misjudging speed on the greens.   I can’t wait to get back out there and practice so I’ll be good enough to hit shots like that on a regular basis.  Yesterday, golf hooked me for good. 

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