The Home of Golf

Trip Start Nov 27, 2012
Trip End May 18, 2013

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Flag of United Kingdom  , Scotland,
Monday, March 25, 2013

Up early and on the road after a one night stop in Edinburgh, Steve obviously was on a mission and that was to try and get a game on the Old Course at St Andrews. Within an hour we walked into the Scores Hotel fifty meters from the first tee, dumped the bags in the room and it was down to see the starter. It is very hard for a single player to get a game, so the surprise on Steve's face was gold when he was told -"Get your gear and get back here - you will get a game”.

We quickly ran across the road to the Golf Shop to buy some wet weather pants, then continued down to the pro shop to hire the golf clubs and back to the starter only to hear him say that Steve would now have to wait an hour or so. In the freezing wind we moved to the practice putting green to await the call.

The call that Steve had been awaiting for arrived and he made it to the tee where he was teamed up with an American from New York also called Steve. Del (being the smart one) decided to retreat to the warmth of the hotel. In the mean time on the course both players were battered by high winds, sleet and some snow but at the end of the game it didn’t matter what was thrown at them. They had a day to remember forever.

With the horrendous weather that had smashed the UK for the past week still about, Del realized it would be a good time to get her hair done (she is so high maintenance!) so she sent Steve off to Kingsbarn Golf Club. Once again he was smashed by the weather which included all the elements but in his words it was one of the best courses he had ever played.The friendly staff at the club made the experience even better -from the time the barman walked the 150 meters to the tenth tee to give him a cup of warm soup and a big swig of single malt scotch to get through the next nine holes - to all the staff taking time to come over and have a chat at the end of the game. Although there were very few people on the course the hospitality was sensational and that matched the course.

The third day had to be golf free and we explored the city of St Andrews, This is one great town which is steeped in history outside of golf. We explored the castle ruins and those of the cathedral  which is imbedded  with stories of  murders, wars and raids as well as being the original home of the church in Scotland. It is interesting when you wander the grounds of the cathedral as it has grave stone going back to the 1500’s.

Our accommodation was first class and our room overlooked the Old Course and St Andrews beach. This is a great town with so much to see and do.

With a day to go Steve once again set out to play on one of the courses in St Andrews. After being told the wait on the New and Jubilee courses would be up to two hours we headed back towards the hotel. Del suggested to Steve that he see the starter of the Old Course 'just in case.’ Of course he said to get your clubs because you can get on in 30 minutes. This time he played with a local couple who helped him navigate his way around the course much better the second time.

Del turned up just in time to see the group coming up the 18th. To her surprise and the crowd at the back of the green (all six of them) Steve’s second shot flew high over the flag and landed 60 feet from it. Two putts later he walked off with a par that he will never forget.

St Andrews is more than just the home of golf but if you try to tell Steve that he will not hear of it. Del’s ear has taken a battering since as she has had to put up with re-telling of all the golf shots over the previous three games. St Andrews is great town for a number of reasons which you can keep coming back to time and time again. It is scenic, friendly, has an interesting history and, of course, is very golfer’s dream destination.
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