THE short drive on Sunday evening from Hollywood to Palos Verdes was a welcome change. Another week in the Los Angeles area and this at The Palos Verdes Championship. I half expected us to ease into the week on Monday after a solid top 10 but alas my lady had other ideas. 18 holes on Monday on probably the hilliest golf course I have caddied on since I came out looping last September!
Yu’s work ethic is unreal but honestly at times she needs to balance it. In this game you have to pause the odd time and smell the roses. Visit the odd site during a week and explore all the fabulous places we are blessed to visit. Too much focus on work and nothing else only golf course and hotel with your dad in tow makes for a very ordinary existence. Our preparation goes well over the first few days and this course requires strategy and lots of patience as the hilly nature of the course leads to some awkward lies and odd bounces.
We have a late teetime on Thursday and the breeze picks up here close to the coast from 12 midday as the tide turns. Level par was very solid in the more difficult conditions. We believed the early start on Friday but afford the opportunity to shoot a low one and our front nine holes we just perfect. Two under through nine but four bogeys on the back was disappointing for a plus two total and a nervous afternoon of leaderboard watching to see will we make the cut into the weekend. Thankfully the wind blew again in the afternoon and the scores got worse in the testing conditions and we scraped into the weekend right on the mark.
A nice feeling when it falls your way as you feel there is nothing to lose now with two more days to try improve your position in the tournament. Saturday started well with a nice birdie on hole 2 but lady luck was not with us on the fifth hole. The tee was pushed up on this par 4 to tempt you to go for the green with your tee shot which we did. Finishing pin high right was not a bad spot but did leave a delicate pitch over a bunker. Yu pitched it too far and as it landed near the other side of the green it bounced up hugely in the air off a sprinkler head and bounded 15 yards forward into a hazard. Talk about just crazy bad luck!!
A double bogey six was the result and a complete momentum killer. Level par from there home was a decent effort but equally doesn’t light up the world. Sunday was more frustration as a bogey and a double on par 5’s really make progress very hard. Some good birdies mixed in resulted in a level par round but very little weekend progress meant a finish just outside the top 60. Better days ahead and a break now for the coming week will do everyone good. Week after week wears you down. It is a grind out here and the balance as I mentioned earlier is hugely important.
I am really looking forward to getting back to Carlow for the week. Spend time with family and friends and hope the weather is conducive to outdoor activities also. Walk the Barrow Track and maybe play a game of golf are just of my plans. Time to chill out and relax also is needed. Six weeks on the road takes it out of you too and next Sunday’s flight to New York will come around pretty fast also. Loving this life though, doing what I hugely enjoy and the travel and exploration is what life is all about. Experiences and lessons learned along the way. Balance.
Harry Ewing’s column – ‘Fairways of Life’ – appears every week in the Nationalist