It sounds pretty lame, granted, but what I try to achieve here is not putting on display some boring plastic ball markers but rather showing off with some pretty outstanding pieces of coins from all parts of the world, be it of low or actually high value.
Years ago, when my grand-dad passed away, I inherited his collection of coins. It wasn‘t a huge collection per se, but it showed this man had some serious interest in the hobby and accumulated some nice pieces after all the yeard that went into the collection.
Inspired by my grand-dad I also acquired some nice pieces as well as collected some during the various trips me and my family did in the last years, and I indeed got ahold some really interesting coins.
Instead of putting everything in a dull folder and get it out only occasional, I figured why not combine this with my biggest hobby and use these coins as ball markers during golf rounds. Through that they actually have a new value and maybe create some interest amongst yourselves. It‘s at least something I like doing from now on.
To set the scene in case you are not aware, Belek is a small town in Turkey. It‘s situated on the south coast that they call „Turkish Riviera“ and actually there is one 5-star hotel next to each other right on the Mediterranean coastal strip — and right behind those hotels, there are numerous outstanding golf courses waiting to be tackled.
But you knew all this, didn‘t you. I made a trip to Belek already couple of years ago and managed to play five courses during my 7-day stay at lovely Rixos Premium Belek. To check out these rounds, please read the articles with the Belek 2013 tag on this site.
Now it’s time, we figured as a family with 2 kids that weren’t there in 2013 and as it’s already almost a decade ago and also as Belek has so much to offer in terms of hotel quality, beaches and what makes a great beach family holiday — it was pretty easy to decide to go.
No question will we make the best out of our 10-day trip and I will surely squeeze in some rounds of golf. It will be hot mid-July, granted, but nothing that will worry me to be honest. Golf season is over then, just makes the golf courses less crowded, I hope. 50+ sunscreen, loads of water, two shirts and a cart, and good to go. Can’t be that different from playing in Dubai if you‘d ask me.
In other words, we can‘t wait to board that plane to be honest. We are currently in the planning phase. The missus is having an eye on what‘s important to take for the kids and I‘m looking at the adult amenities and golf prep that‘s equally necessary. First things first, right? ;)
Obviously the flight will go via Antalya which is a short car ride from Belek. Antalya itself has loads to offer for tourists but it‘s more Belek that caters for exquisite hotels and golf. As well as for international soccer teams in the off-season by the way.
Last week I was competing in just another Deutsche Bank tournament that was staged at my local club, just around the corner. It‘s not a hilly course but still my game was up and down.
It‘s one of these days, you head to the course, you have a good feeling, you even practiced a little in advance — which I did indeed. Putts were falling in the practice area and when you head to tee one, you‘re pumped.
I stepped on the dancefloor, had the honor and, no kidding, hooked two balls in the bushes. Two balls gone, score in danger right on the first hole.
The following holes were weird, too. Either I played a par or a triple bogey and had to pick it up. Very frustrating. Especially because a good score was possible. In the end I scored at least 6 pars but numerous pick-ups, all caused by lousy tee shots. So my long game is absolutely out of shape and I‘m risking my handicap to go all the way south.
I know I need professional help but the next tournament is just around the corner. A quick fix is needed. I reckon I don‘t need more pars currently but I need to get rid of the really bad shots off the tee.
Maybe I‘m starting again to use my 2- and 3-iron — who knows, I had some great time with them.
Apart from skiing in Austria earlier in the year, this trip in May was the first summer-holiday-like we scheduled in 2022. And after all the Corona-mess this really felt like a true holiday again, gladly.
It began with some days in Switzerland, then led us to beautiful Lake Como, where we stayed for a week in beautiful Menaggio, a lovely town on the west side of the lake. It marks the northern end of the so-called Como Riviera and indeed is a great place to stay and enjoy the area.
Close by, there is a golf treasure I had on my list. Menaggio & Cadenabbia Golf Club is the second oldest golf course in Italy and together with Villa d‘Este one of the two clubs in the Como area. Staying in Menaggio, no question I had my clubs with me.
I am a person that is sticking to rules, no matter what. This includes golf rules I adhere to.
There is one rule however that I question from time to time. Not really questioning the existence per se, but I struggle with it somehow. I am speaking of rule 4.1b(1): „A player must not start a round with more than 14 clubs, or have more than 14 clubs during the round.“
It sounds easy and easy to follow but there is more to it, at least from my perspective. In case you would like to know the origins of this rule, you should read this Golfdigest article.
Several years I struggled with my woods. As a tendency I excelled with irons, including 3- and 2-iron. The 2-iron was my absolute go-to driving iron which I used in almost every situation. And I had no real pressure, I worked my way down to a 12 handicap with just irons in my bag.
In the meantime I managed to progress with my woods fortunately. And I totally digged the importance of a good, long and straight tee shot with a (hybrid) wood. With that in mind, I bought myself a set of woods: driver, 3-wood, 5-wood — and I even thought about a 7-wood.
On the lower end of the club spectrum I kept it simple with 52- and 56-degree wedges, but as I started to use a chipper, all this obviously adds up.
Every now and then there is something that comes to an end. For good. Then there are the things that pause, for some reason, and later resume, again for a good reason.
The latter is what is supposed to happen here.
Once golf was my focus, next to work. Then there was my wife, my first kid, and quite recently a new baby. This all shifts focus obviously, makes blurry what was clear in the past. And it all falls into a time period which is so unusual and unpredictable in my generation that one thinks twice what really matters in life. A global pandemic can indeed bring people closer together, create some clarity on what‘s important and what‘s just clutter.
Family will always be in focus, work will too and so is the health for the whole bunch. All the rest has to stand in line. And then there are these windows of time, of possibilities, of opportunities. Some are educational, some are cultural, many are leisure and some are sportive.
Long story short, I will try to make more room for golf again. I will deliver for my family, will continue my career and at the same time will strive for excellence in this beautiful sport. I know this demands time, an asset I might not have as much as before, but that only makes me more focussed, really pinpoints me on efficiency.
And it indeed closes a circle. „Golficiency is golf proficiency with German efficiency“, I wrote a decade ago. Now more than ever.
This is a rather old thing I found on the internet but I had to giggle and thought you might like it as well.
Imagine you’re a keen golfer, you get out to the course every time you can, every time your family and business commitments allow for a round or a training session. It didn’t payoff though in the past, you play and play. Then one day you play a tournament and, God knows, everything comes together, everything. Drives go straight, approaches land on the green and your putting is excellent.
How fantastic! Too bad that it’s a weekday and you were supposed to be working. Not imaginable what would happen if your boss would find out you weren’t really sick but very successful on the golf course instead.
This is what the scoring leaderboard looks like then:
Hi there, I’m still alive. Sorry for all the silence here. As far as my golf progress goes this year, I can report the following:
Tournaments played: 0 Rounds of golf played: 0 Driving range sessions: 6 Putting green sessions: 4 Pitching range sessions: 0
Also, no club update, no equipment change, no major difference whatsoever. Just very little golf in total…
Do I have an excuse? Well I do believe I have one but it’s of course relative and rather subjective, but indeed I became father for the second time, and the baby boy (a future golfer, naturally) was born in early June.
April, May was still quite COVID-restricted and from June onwards everything apart from baby, family and job was obviously of reduced priority. Even golf—who would have thought.
Instead, my 4-year old daughter began to go to a bambini golf camp and had weekly practice lessons. That was the time when I got my range sessions scheduled in while my daughter, in sight, was practicing on her own. Well, “practicing” is a strong word — 4-year olds just try to whack the ball no matter what. It looked more like a field hockey stroke; by the way another sport my dear daughter started, tried out and lost interest in quite quickly.
After several weeks, she lost interest in golf too, and I therefore my chance to get to the course myself. Poor me.
But for some reason I was hooked and I booked a session with a local pro here at Hof Hausen, where I live. I said I needed some help with my woods as I only play irons in competitions. And as I almost always play comps instead of just recreational weekend rounds, I barely touched my woods as I have been too inconsistent for my liking and therefore refrained from getting my score (and mood) ruined each time.
I had my pro lesson, he assessed my swing, was astonished about the fact that I don’t use woods at all and video-diagnosed my swing thoroughly. Apparently I was playing too arm-heavy with too little shoulder and hip rotation and with that created a rather steep down swing from the top before impact. Once that was fixed in two minutes or so, the balls were flying like arrows through the air and I was hooked even more. Couldn’t get the grin out of my face really.
What also got me were his comments how he sees my (long) game in general. Depending on the short game obviously, he could see my handicap go down to mid-single digits easily. Well, it wasn’t so easy in the past years, but granted, that was irons-only what I played then.
You can imagine what such comment does to your self-confidence while you’re hitting pure rockets from the tee box. I was high and wanted more.
Reality bites the dust, so I didn’t manage to get to the course the weeks after but last night I enrolled not for three tournaments, not for four but for not less than five tournaments in the coming weeks. And I can’t wait to get the big sticks to the even bigger test. Future (and the handicap) will tell if that was a good idea!
The comps include rounds at Spessart, Domtal Mommenheim, Groß-Zimmern, Lich and Rheinhessen. Bring it on! Pray for sunshine though… it’s really miserable outside nowadays. What a summer!