Hello, and welcome.
I'm going to be writing about and including some pictures from some of the many golf courses I have been fortunate enough to play around the world. The first reference to golf is a little difficult to verify, but some believe it was King James 11 in 1495 who declared that "Fute-ball and Golf be utterly cried down". A distraction for the masses and a mis-use of the land I guess.
Here’s me as a youngster, never dreaming one day I’d be playing a course like Muirfield (that’s me there in 2016).
I was born and raised in Scotland, in Doune, a small town made famous by a group of comedians (Monty Python) more than for its historic castle, the much prized antique pistols or its Roman ruins. The town has now around 450 inhabitants. I barely recognize some parts, but here’s the main drag, busy as ever…
I read History and Politics at Edinburgh, graduating in 1980. I married Gill in 1983, and we have two girls, Louise and Sarah. After a few years working in Edinburgh, I moved my family to London in 1987, before moving to the States in 1995. We became US Citizens in 2018.
These blogs began life in March 2017 on a very cold and snowy day in New York’s Westchester County: I suddenly realized early that year that I was in my late 50's and have played golf all over the world. I have played with family, with close friends, and met lots of interesting fellow golf aficionados along the way, collecting hundreds of pictures and memorabilia and great memories. I was even President of a Club in the New York area. I've stayed in lots of different places, gone to restaurants and bars and had lunches and dinners after playing to congratulate, rationalize, but ultimately able confirm that the world is in fact a marvelous place when seen through the lens of the golfer.
After just a couple of hours of writing notes and importing pictures, I realized just how big a project this will be! But, I also realized just how fortunate I have been to travel to so many different countries where I have also been able to play golf. I have been blessed to play at some of the most prestigious courses in the world including the likes of Winged Foot and Pebble Beach, Royal Sidney and Royal Cape Town, but I am also a very proud member of four clubs in Scotland: Archerfield, North Berwick, Pitlochry, and Renaissance. In 2016 I became a Member at Winged Foot in New York. Truly, the highlight of my golf career! Thank you Kevin, Dick, Clarke, Jim, Roy and a boat load of other great people who facilitated my membership.
I have really enjoyed playing golf, although sometimes it's such a frustrating sport. As of today, I am playing to a 6.4 Index, which is going to put me at around 8 handicap on most but the toughest of courses. Not bad. I have travelled to more than 50 countries and have played golf in many of them, and certainly made a point of visiting courses to grab a score card or logo'd ball for the collection if I was unable to tee it up.
I think my Grandfather Russell and Uncle David who were both keen and good golfers and who initially taught me the game would have been amazed and so proud of that. My father in law Christopher Grant was also an avid golfer, Captain of his course in Pitlochry, and I enjoyed many a round with him. He was a prominent figure in the local community, and I arranged to have a Trophy in his honor at his Club. The Secretary has arranged to make this an event over three weekends, which is really a very nice gesture indeed and a fitting tribute to Christopher.
One final thought on this brief introduction. I love golf, and if we mess around with the environment much more, we won’t be able to enjoy this game as widely as we should be able to. Here’s the latest read of GHG in our atmosphere: