It should be made clear at the outset that there has been no gender change on my part. No tinkering with the works. Although the sentence “ managed to get myself onto the winning team of Connie, Lilly and Pearl” might have led readers to such a conclusion.
Due to the unfortunate but accidental omission of an introductory and explanatory note the May report failed to make clear that it was from the pen of Vivienne Youngs, fully qualified as the fourth participant, received at the very last moment, and shoved in un-edited to meet the deadline. At an even later time, and too late for inclusion, came the relevant photograph which, it is hoped, will now dispel some of the rumours.
(Ed. Vivienne’s golfing skills may have earned her a place in the winning team but it seems unlikely she would qualify for selection if an IT squad were needed. The full story would get this edition off to a boring and unbelieveable start. Suffice to say the oft requested picture never did materialise. Another picture did but of different ladies. So, rather than re-arrange several pages, and lose at least one connecting link, a special photo was commissioned which embraces a sizeable collection of ladies including at least one who is relevant to the matter in hand. On reflection “sizeable” might not be an apt adjective but it is time to move on. This is a May topic we are still talking about, for goodness sake.)
This heading should not be read as being directly related to, or a reflection on, the event itself, but the Lady Captain’s Away Day took place last month and was not reported. Editorial patience, and readership eagerness, can now be rewarded. The un-edited diary of events has come from the pen of the Lady Captain herself and, whilst it may not align exactly with some verbal stories one has heard, it nevertheless suggests that everyone enjoyed themselves. Which, of course, is the aim of the exercise.
You can download full report here: May Report
Quite a lonely day by comparison with most Tuesdays, a large number of men being on the coach towards Cadiz. A very small field of 16 males was outnumbered by the Ladies who had 23 on parade. Scores were not earth moving and were:
To round off a rather uneventful competition only two of the prize winners were on hand to be photographed on the due date.
Six teams of three ladies took full advantage of their husbands’ absence, enjoying first a Bramble on Asia and then dinner. Thursday June 4th thus passed most enjoyably. Especially for the winners who were;
The day was arranged by Vice Captain Pauline Hilliard.
For the benefit of the less well informed the Mixed Summer Interclub League comprises six clubs with an event being held at each club. It is a mixed pairs format, betterball, with best four scores for each club counting towards the total for the day.
The club’s team started the 2015 campaign with a dramatic win over the field at beautiful Guadalamina GC. Carol Rees & Arthur O’Connor set the tone with 41 points, a fine score which Les Wicks & Ritva Hagglund then equalled. Everyone played well it seems. Cees & Lilly Lagerwerth managed 39 and the rest of the team carded decent scores. The weather was perfect, as was the start to our season it would seem.
Interestingly El Chaparral finished last of six but one of their pairs recorded the day’s best score of 43 points. Arthur & Carol were 3rd on handicap.
Cumulative league points for the two matches were…
…but there is some way to go yet.
Our best contributors were Roy Davies & Carol Rees with 40, James Reid & Sonya Foster 39.
Other non-playing members helped to make things run smoothly, not least Vic Hilliard who assumed the role of executive traffic manager in the car park, welcoming the visitors.
Amazing how many times I was reminded of this well worn saying as the coach trundled its way towards Novo Sancti Petri Golf Club on June 3rd., and by a seemingly circuitous route. Why such a reminder should have been necessary is not clear, as the following summary of events will show.
As dawn made way for daylight so did gather a band of pilgrims, bound together in devotion to their Leader, and blindly following the trail he had already blazed. Most spent the journey time contemplating the Scriptures According to Brother Peter. Others silently studied their varied texts. Peace reigned throughout the vehicle.
Arrival at the appointed Inn was marked by a minor accident in which Brother Jack tripped on the kerb getting down off the coach and sustained a bloody but non life threatening injury. The cleaning lady in the mens’ toilet kindly carried out a temporary repair.
There followed prolonged exercise in which all present participated fully, some with less enjoyment than others, this state of mind attributable to the fierce wind which did blow throughout, and the presence of trees on the course.
Cometh the evening some did pray but all shareth the bread and wine before gathering together for conversation and, it is reported, attempts at choir practise.
The following day, after sitting idly for an hour or so, more exercise was taken, albeit in a different format. The elements remained the same and there were some pilgrims heard to speak unkindly of the wind, and trees, of which there were many. Cometh eventide a quiet meal, light refreshment, gentle conversation of a friendly nature, were followed by a games period in which some were less experienced than most.
On the final day teams were replaced by individual combat, every pilgrim for himself. The battleground was the same as on Day One but a few, mostly of a senior and aged disposition, did suffer unkind abuse for, it was claimed by some, being put in an advantageous position. A frustrated outcry which did grow in intensity at the award ceremony. This took place following a simple BBQ in the original old club house known as “Chozo”. A pastoral setting for the Farewell Thanksgiving.
Back at La Cala many of the womenfolk had gathered to welcome their loved ones, and hear their version of what happened in Vegas.
Memories will dim but the kindly bandage lady will stay in mind, as will the Spanish kiwi, and a host of friendly ducks.
Ten teams of four enjoyed pleasant playing conditions for a format which adds pressure to the golden ball holder. Not that you would have thought so judging by the scores which came in. Johan, resplendent in his new birthday cap, and supported( or carried) by his team-mates, positively beamed as he went through their high scoring performance whilst clutching his bottle of wine. Not only did they win but by a substantial and almost unbelievable margin.
Johan, sad to say, has been stricken with an acute strain of lenterlinkitus and can regularly be seen foraging in bushes and undergrowth, whilst on constant alert should a “fishing rod” be required. For one so young, comparatively speaking, this is just another burden to bear in the stakes for total golfing focus. Perhaps a medical compound could be prescribed, said he thinking back to Lily the Pink days, when it was “most efficacious in every case”.
Sidetracking somewhat, but with health matters in mind, it was quite exciting to read that red wine every day is very good for one. Plenty of resveratol and other polyphenol chemicals help to keep the nasties at bay. Merlot and Cabinet Sauvignon were especially recommended but, and there’s always a but at the end of such reports, in the majority of red wines these wonder chemicals are filtered out during the wine production system!
Those of you familiar with Snopes.com will know that this deals with urban legends and may not be surprised to learn that thought is being given in some quarters to naming the 8th. “Moody’s Hole”. This following David’s third successive eagle thereon, which came with an impressive high pressure putt from about 4 metres. It earned him 5 points and contributed significantly to his outgoing 20. Elsewhere scoring was also commendable in near ideal conditions.
David Moody is not universally recognised as a figurehead of fashion, in truth nowhere is he so recognised, and his sartorial colour co-ordination suggests that SpecSavers might be worth a visit. However, he has enhanced his reputation by investing in a new pair of golf shoes, which are eye catching to say the least.
Softly moulded to his feet they come in a pale grey shade with white stripes, bright blue soles and a wealth of laces. Some form of bondage comes to mind. Couple this with drinking water from a pink bottle, and driving off a pink tee peg, and it is easy to understand why eyebrows are being raised in certain quarters.
Another David to command attention this day is surnamed Gilchrist and did so by getting his first hole in one, at the 16th. He also walked away with 22 new golf balls having obliterated the hopes of all those who entered “The Two’s”. As is traditional David celebrated by buying all those present at the subsequent prize giving a glass of champagne.
Your Newsletter is proud to announce a pictorial scoop which will amaze many members. Such a sight has never before been seen here, in broad daylight, within living memory. The original photograph is set to raise lots of money at the forthcoming Cudeca auction where it is hoped, if not overcome by the shyness he showed when appearing for dinner on the Away Day, the owner of these immortal trousers might be available for autographs.
A member whose frontal protrusion has been unkindly refered to by some heartless commentators as his “beer belly” was less mortified by the alternative suggestion that it be described as his “liquid grain storage facility”
Bit like “My wife does not nag. She suffers from verbal repetition”.
The Liga Senior match away to La Canada on June 10th. ended in a draw. 1 ½ v 1 ½ . The highlight of the day, according to one team member, was the after dinner response by Captain-for-the-day Arthur O’Connor. Rendered in Spanish it was marked 7/10 and considered quite an achievement for someone who cannot even speak his mother tongue. (Quote). No pictures were taken due to the ugliness of the team. (Another quote!).
There was a distinct chill in the air as play commenced but the sun came out of hiding on the back nine, only to be challenged by a lively breeze. Tales were of ragged golf but three teams did well enough to win wine and were:
1st 91 Alan Jewett, Connor Jewett, Mike & Lina Zelley
2nd 87 Jill Davies, Ria van Wershoven, Danny Rees, Peter Robinson (on handicap)
3rd 87 Peter Bradley, David Gilchrist, Hazel Gilchrist, Marie Wilson
The first reader to identify the owners of these legs will win a bottle of Members’ Wine of their own colour choosing.
For the sceptics who doubted the veracity of the earlier Mens’ Away Day(s) report, here is an alternative version for your further consideration.
This year the men went to the same place as the women had been the previous week. Obviously there was some fear of reprisal on the part of the hotel. However, the 36 strong party was greeted warmly at the first main port of call, the very modern clubhouse of the Novo Sancti Petri Golf Club.
The coach journey from La Cala was broken for a coffee and natural relief spell in an unknown area the other side of Benelup. The relief aspect might equally be described as escape, most of the journey having been compulsorily occupied by attention to an “R & A Rules Quiz” painstakingly compiled by Peter Robinson and stretching to no less than 46 multi-part questions spread over seven A 4 pages of small type. Even Ron Chesterton never went that far. To complicate things further the questions were in some cases what might be described as “trick”, solutions varying according to grammatical interpretation. There was an initial buzz of conversation as teams of two compared thoughts and ideas as to correctness, but soon this died away. Some gave up in frustration. Some slept. Some stuck at it and were rewarded by feeling sick because of looking down for so long. After coffee, acting-Party Leader Vic Hilliard, master of the microphone, read out the answers and sought a winning team. None was forthcoming. Partly, it is suspected, because few wanted to admit their poor showing. Claims of 50% success were received with undisguised scorn by the body of the coach, and disbelief by PLVH who, having not tackled the task himself, wrongly assumed everyone would get all the answers. Mind you, it was a well constructed and thoughtful quiz for which Peter should be thanked. It must have taken time to assemble but, for him, a labour of love. There are few with better knowledge of the rules. He told this newsletter.
Play on the first afternoon was on the Mar y Pinos course and in the form of an AM/AM, Par 72 and 6097 metres off the whites. 5206 off the Blues. A liberal sprinkling of umbrella pines, coupled with the Wind from Hell, made for testing conditions so poor scoring came as no great surprise.
After liquid refreshments the players were transferred, or in some cases walked, to the Iberostar Royal Andalucia Hotel where the first to book in were offered costless upgrades to suites in the adjoining Royal Andalucia Plaza hotel. As one of the beneficiaries of this apparent largesse your editor found himself in acres of comfortable, well equipped space with grand views of the beach and coastline.
Unpacked and showered the coachees were re-united with Captain Brian Farmer and the small handful who had travelled by car, presumably having heard about the quiz.. This gathering was adjacent to the bar area and made the more enjoyable by not having to pay for the first drink, this being generously supplied by the Captain. Inevitably there were some who questioned the limitation instead of showing their appreciation for this kindly gesture.
All meals were of a DIY buffet variety, the display attractive and the choice plentiful. Nobody will have gone hungry. Wine was reasonably priced but, noticeably, consumption levels moderate. At table anyway. Those of us who chose a sensible bedtime cannot accurately report on later proceedings but Will Jackson’s aptitude for song was reported, as was the disappointment of the hard core carousers when the bar closed at half past midnight. Which does seem a bit odd for an hotel?
The schedule for the whole trip was at times difficult to fathom and certainly left plenty of time for relaxation, conversation, and character asassination. Eventually play on the Thursday took place on the Centro Course. Shorter at 5846 and 5185 metres respectively White and Blue tees. The format was a Bramble. With a proliferation of the ball swallowing but attractive pines, and an even fiercer wind blasting, the test of skills and restraint of tempers was even more demanding. The evening was spent in much the same way, albeit without any freebies from the Captain. When last observed the dining and wining had been replaced by the pool table whereon friendly contests amongst the inexperienced were later replaced by exponents with Robinson-like knowledge of the rules and, clearly, no little experience on the green baize.
The final day’s action was again on the Mar y Pinos course but of an individual nature. Straightforward Stableford off full handicaps – irrespective of tee position! Later to become a contentious issue in some quarters. The conditions were not easier but prior knowledge of the layout helped a bit. Even so the scores were modest, the winning total of 34 telling its own tale. Especially, being mildly contentious, off full and not adjusted handicaps!! Later, the general concensus seemed to be that the courses were good, the umbrella pines attractive but ill positioned at times, and ball consuming. Only Mother Nature, in her infinite wisdom, made scoring difficult. Certainly it was a pleasant change to play on flat surfaces after the Himalayas of La Cala.
David (Invisible) Wilson, Peter Penney, Damien Murphy and Mike Tunnell, whose 90 points won the Bramble.
Alan Jewett, David Moody, Chris Park, and Peter Robinson whose 76 points gained them first place in the AM/AM
To the barely disguised chagrin of some, the Singles Championship was dominated by players off the Blue Tees. As is well known, winning is less important than taking part, a maxim temporarily forgotten by some of the younger prilgrims, who watched with mumbles and envy as awards were made to:
1st 34 Peter Penney
2nd 32 David Millar (on handicap)
3rd 32 Erling Johnsen
It would be nice to be able to record that these winners were rewarded with warm and appreciative applause.
This year’s outing came to a pleasant and well behaved conclusion in the “Chozo” Club House where the modest BBQ was supplemented by complimentary beer and wine, sometimes a dangerous policy. However, time did not permit abuse of the system and probably explains why Vic Hilliard, now the master of recorded music, failed to ignite the coach choir on the return journey. His musical theme and related quiz were based on the James Bond films, the party being invited to name the tune, the singer, and the film of which, if memory serves well, there were 28. Despite Will’s increasingly plaintiff efforts, melodic and knowledgeable for the opening line or two, the quiz died gently away and was superceded by somnolence.
And so it came to pass that the 2015 Captain’s Away Day(s) entered the realms of memory without controversy or incident of consequence. Doubtless the dominance of Blue tee occupants within the prize giving ranks will stir clubhouse debate for a while, but such matters tend to fade and 2016 arrangements are in their infant stage right now. To which end next year’s Captain is soliciting members’ input already. Let him have your thoughts if you haven’t already done so.
Meanwhile, what played in Novo Sancti Petri might as well stay there for all the newsworthy excitement it generated.
Captain Brian Farmer’s thank-you-for-coming gift to everyone was not a toiletry bag but a distinctive ballmarker. Distinctive in design and dimension. In appearance almost larger in diameter than a golf ball itself, surface sitting to increase its already considerable thickness, and probably more distracting than the ball it replaces. Thanks Brian.
At a private demonstration it has now been explained that the actual ball marker is held within the huge outer case. This fact is not known to most members as yet, the giant version being seen in regular use.
Another small field and another good day for the tried and tested. There will be very familiar faces coming forward to collect their bottles of wine.
As if the game itself wasn’t difficult enough the powers that be decided to introduce a form of play which called either for a very autocratic team captain or, as proved mostly to be the case, a committee meeting after each hole to decide what to record. For those not playing here are the rules.
At the completion of each hole, the team must decide which members stableford scores will count.
At the end of each hole at least one stableford score must be recorded for the team.
At the end of 18 holes, the team must have recorded 40 stableford scores.
This could be 2 on each hole with 3 scores on 4 holes OR 4 scores on some holes and only 1 on others, any combination can be used, but you must decide before you move to the next tee.
Do you use up your stableford scores early in the round, or leave them until the end, the choice is yours BUT you must record at least one score on each hole AND each member of the team has to score at least 7 of the 40 stableford scores.
Three person teams play full handicap plus 20%.
The fact that the winning team managed to put in a card with 41 scores will give some indication of the level of numeracy required. There were loud cries of “Disqualify” from the prize giving assembly, and indeed some friendly booing was heard. Undaunted by having to adjust their card, an allowance made by the organiser in the interests of friendship and fun, the winners strode forward to mount the rostrum with Peter Penney, the errant card keeper, smiling broadly, happily, and defiantly. Always a happy person, Peter. Like his cousin.
1st 105 Mike & Lina Zelley, Peter Robinson, Peter Penney
No picture of the second place team are available due to the deputy acting cameraman pressing the wrong button.
2nd 104 Vic Hilliard, Ron Chesterton, Jack Perry & Wendy Hinds
3rd 100 Louis Lenterlink, Libby Robinson, George Kirk & Jim Herold.
The winning average of 5.83 points per hole strangely doesn’t sound so impressive as the overall 105 points, a total which drew an appreciative gasp from the other players and pipped contenders.
There was a view afterwards that Medal play would have been better than Stableford. The registering of 0 as a score not feeling quite right somehow? Overall most were in favour of the format so doubtless we shall see 40 Balls featuring again next year.
Understandably not every social function can be held on our own territory. Equally would it be inappropriate to publicise another venue. Suffice to say there were two such “outings” this month. The first, organised by Erling Johnson, found a small group of club members being taken to a vineyard 10 kms north of Ronda where significant progress is being made in the organic recovery of grapes which were wiped out by parasites 60 years ago. The visit was both interesting and educational, the wine swallowing (no spittoons available!) most pleasant, and the light lunch of home made tapas very acceptable.
The other event was somewhat different, required the ladies to dress up in their finery, was organised again by Pauline Hilliard, and took the form of an Ascot Ladies Day lunch. 13 suitably attired ladies were accompanied by their partners. Pearl Fisher won the prize for guessing the colour of the Queen’s outfit, and also 107 euros for picking the winning horse. Afterwards “many went into the gardens for music and dancing”. This looks like becoming an established date in the un-official social calendar. Tables have already been booked for next year.
There must have been something secretive about these two encounters because obtaining details has been like getting blood from the proverbial stone. It is known that Mike Fisher had water problems, since denied, and that overall we were beaten 7 ½ to 4 ½. Apart from which the whole proceedings remain shrouded in darkness.
It was a pleasure for me to both chauffer and card Dean Moore as he reeled off a round of genuine ability, application, and some outstanding golf shots. 8 pars and a double bogey on the front nine!! Three shots dropped on 10 and 11 but then came another run of concentration, enviable ball striking and, eventually 40 points. Off 11. Which won’t be the case next time out! That’s the reward you get.
Otherwise the temperature was high, bottled water sales rose, and a frisky wind towards the end was warmly welcomed. The course is beginning to “brown up” in some areas and there is little doubt that a week’s heavy rain would be welcome. Unless you are on annual limited holiday, of course. The best performers on a day of high scoring in general were:
Hopes rose swiftly when news came that a mother and several off-spring were in search of a home. Deflation, but understanding, followed when it emerged that they had already settled in happily – in the pond by Europa’s 10th hole.
On Monday 22nd., our Ladies were in action on the Parador course in Malaga. A flat, historic landscape which has become famous for its resident parakeets. Of which there is now one less. A mis-judged 3 wood despatched one of these colourful birds into another world. Subsequent claims that “I got a birdie”, whilst true, failed to strike the right note. Instead they brought to mind the famous TV sketch in which John Cleese took a recently bought parrot back to the pet shop and complained on the grounds that it was dead. The shop owner wouldn’t agree but, as the then Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher quoted at the Conservative Party Conference shortly afterwards, and Secretary Jenny Chesterton might be confirming now- “This is an ex-parakeet. It has ceased to be. It is expired. It has gone to meet its maker. It is no more. It is a late parakeet.”
It is now more than six months since I was inveigled into this editorial seat. That isn’t quite correct because editing is a minor part of the work load. Wish that it were more. Members participation would be great. Reaction even! Contributions are rarer than diplodocus, if you discount the bare details prised out of team captains as part of their “duty”. Response is minimal and largely limited to brief verbal comment when passing in the car park or clubhouse. However, there is now hope. A club member, who understandably wishes to remain anonymous, has volunteered to do an Agony Aunt’s Column each month. Under the pseudnym of ElLA CALAmity, (Ed. Get it?) he/she will be amongst you and watching, seeking material for future comment. This fearless person, who cannot be named for legal reasons, has submitted a trial for editorial comment but, unfortunately, this June edition already looks likely to set new records for length, so much will have to wait for a quieter month. To enable readers to assess and, who knows, even comment on this future feature, here is an example.
I know I’m not the first to ask but can nothing be done about the speed of play? I personally move at normal speed but by the time I have adjusted my glove, consulted my GPS, selected a club, visualised the shot, and begun my preparation routine, my partners have each played two shots and moved on. It is spoiling my round. Anonymous.”
“Look Anonymous – Anonymous? – Anonymous my hat!! You know who you are. I know who you are. Everyone knows who you are. Get on with it. We are all bored stiff waiting for you. ElLA”.
The home match was on June 8th and our team of Carol Rees, Karen O’Connor, Ritva Hagglund, Kate Bradley, Pauline Hilliard and Vivienne Young won by 2-1. Jenny Chesterton replaced Kate Bradley for the return fixture on June 22nd and the result was a sorry one 0-3. The Ladies still managed to smile for the camera though.
In view of the larger than usual pictorial content this regular feature has been suspended for a month. It will return. Be on your guard.
Trust the ladies to come up with something a little extra?
This month their competition took the form of a BramblePlus. OK?
What it means is that the person whose drive is chosen gets double points. Assuming they get any, that is. This may or may not explain why there is no mention of “copious quantities of wine” in the submitted report. In fact there was no report. Just stats and pics. (Ed. Why is LSGb so difficult? Or is it me?), anyway, the winners were:
The organiser this month was Jenny Chesterton who has since fled to England!
An Ashley-led convoy of 32 buggies set out at funeral pace from the car park where players had foregathered and been briefed by organiser Agustin Alonso. A jazz band would have further reminded one of the opening scene from “Pete Kelly’s Blues”, of Mardi Gras and Bourbon Street. The Halfway House white elephant was a poor substitute, but the weather was kind and the cause could not have been better.
My playing companions included Ron Chesterton, Bill Field, and fellow Blue Erling Johnsen, who played well but, ultimately, was beaten in the Blues league table by fellow veteran Iain Macaulay who finished fifth overall with 37 points. Bill, who consumes more water in a round than our apartment does in a month, played with great focus, and clearly had his eyes set on a prize position. In this he was just thwarted by the relentless Les Wicks, on handicap, but 39 points was a good score and further evidence that this evolving low handicapper is a man to watch. These are thwarting times for the gentle giant.
Lunch in the clubhouse took the form of a BBQ’d buffet during which the mood was lively and enjoyable. The kitchen did a good job.
Afterwards came the traditional raffle winners with Ladies Captain Sonya Foster announcing the results. Funny how often the same people appear two or three times and others not at all?
Next on the agenda were the day’s prize winners. Jenny Chesterton and Alan Jewett scooping the Nearest the Pin awards.
The three top ladies on a day of good scores proved to be.
With two Spaniards occupying first and second places it was left to reliable Les Wicks to keep the members’ flag flying, which his 39 points did as well as earning a third spot prize.
Star of the day though, and winner of the Overall Prize, was Lilly Lagerwerf, whose 44 points left her three ahead of next best, and left her seemingly as surprised as most. A great score and a deserving winner. She must be getting used to stepping up for prizes now?
It should be mentioned that these scores are hot off the press and are subject to alteration, strictly speaking but unlikely. Nor can revised handicaps be confirmed yet.
The highlight of the proceedings proved to be the auction which, as on previous occasions, was carried out in inimitable style by Damien Murphy. He is as to the manor born and, being Irish of course, has no problem in finding a suitable word for every occasion. Ad libbing is second nature. A deep mental store of jokes to suit remarks from the audience, or to make fun of the prizes, coupled with the experience to know when being risqué is acceptable, make him a perfect and natural auctioneer. He well deserved his standing ovation at the end of his stint.
La Cala has been hosting this Cudeca Cup competition for 19 years now and we should not lose sight of the real winner on the day. The official figure is not yet available but an initial guesstimate suggests 7000+ euros were raised. Vic and Pauline Hilliard, with help of Captains Sonya & Brian, can feel very satisfied with the result of all their considerable efforts.
To end this edition on a very happy note comes last minute news that Mike and Sylvia Robbins are now proud grandparents after 17 years of waiting!
Whilst in family mode may I be allowed to mention that Lilian and I became great uncle/aunt to twin boys last week. Felix and Jack!! We look forward to meeting them in August.
Please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.