Today we putted on glass, which was entertaining. The two games prior - at Waipukurau and Riversdale Beach - had been played in pouring rain, on furry greens. But Hutt GC, where we teed off this morning, has just hosted the North Island Amateur Championship. The course was immaculate, and the greens like lightning. Needless to say, our putting and chipping had to be adapted sharpish.
Mike took longer to adapt than I. He had 22 putts on the front 9, so I started taking bets on Facebook. The only respondent picked 23 putts on the return nine (and even offered a guess that Michael would shoot 90). Thankfully Mike clawed it back, and played some dazzling golf down the stretch. Still couldn't sink anything outside 5 feet though. The pleasure of 3 putting wasn't reserved only for him either - I managed one on each nine (the latter coming on the 18th, resulting in an 80, a shade ahead of Mike on 81). 2&1, and 13-5 in the match. A slippery slope for the bearded Goldstein...
Hutt GC turned out to be very pleasant indeed. The clouds burned off after an hour or so, giving way to penetrating heat. I looked silly in trousers, and lamented the decision not to bring shorts. Blooming pohutukawas (Kiwi Christmas trees, for you foreigners) lined the beautifully prepared fairways, which I visited only on rare occasions.
Unfortunately we got held up behind some geriatrics. These punters were slow - and I mean SLOW. Glaciers move quicker than these miniature men, and I sincerely hope they have by now completed the walk back to the carpark. If not, rigoris mortis has probably set in.
After two weeks in the wilderness it feels strange to be back in the big smoke. Somehow life seems less complicated on remote farms up the coast...
Tomorrow we head to Te Marua, again up the Hutt Vallley. Apparently there is either water or O.B. on 16 holes, so chances of playing to our handicaps are slim. Better stock the bag well with golf balls.
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