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Newsletter November 2016

Newsletter November

A flying start

Laura Thompson, to whom further reference will follow, began November in some style. On America, on the first day of the month, in the first qualifying competition for the Consistency Trophy, she really set the pace. Of course, she was “punished” by a severe handicap cut but one suspects this will not deter a keen competitor from aiming at further successes.

1st 41 Laura Thompson (cut 2.4 to 24.2)
2nd 38 Ursula Wetzel ( on handicap)
3rd. 38 Anne Hannam (cut 0.6 to 17.4)

1st. 39 Derek Steele (cut 0.9 to 13.5)
2nd. 38 Paul O’Callaghan (cut 0.6 to 17.3) (on handicap)
3rd. 38 Vic Hilliard (cut 0.8 to 18.7)

Newsletter November
l-r: Laura, Anne, Ursula, Captain
Newsletter November
l-r: Paul, Vic, Intruder?


Power cut saves a drenching

Early morning rain raised some doubts but the sun emerged belatedly and a later then usual shotgun start made for a leisurely beginning to the day. For some of us in Los Altos a power cut caused last minute consternation with garage and security gates refusing to open. A means to manually open them was discovered in the very nick of time but leaving Lilian alone in an empty block and with no resources led to my withdrawal. Whatever next one wonders? The only consolation was that the rain had not gone away. It just hid for a while, returning at intervals, sometimes heavily, to soak and hinder players. Many stuck to their guns but when the thunder began it was the signal for most to retreat to the clubhouse. In fact only three teams of the twelve that started managed to finish, so they thoroughly deserved the three prizes available. It was the familiar Lone Ranger event, on America, and on Saturday November 5th., Fireworks Night in the UK.

1st. 89 Peter Edstrom, Caz Rozelli, Wendy Fretwell, David Evans.
2nd. 85 Alan Jewett, Anne Hannam, Ottar Angelskaar, Dean Moore (on handicap)
3rd. 85 Sonya Foster, Ron Chesterton, Anne Mills, Vic Hilliard

Newsletter November
l-r: David, Caz, Wendy, Peter, Captain


Newsletter November
l-r: Alan, Anne, Dean, Ottar
Newsletter November
l-r: Vic, Ron, Sonya, Anne


New members

It has always been editorial policy to welcome and introduce newcomers to a wider audience than the few players with whom they chose to mingle. To do this meaningfully requires co-operation and a few details of a not too personal nature. Brief history of working background, family, golf involvement, golf achievements, coming to Spain, etc. Whenever unfamiliar names are spotted the newsletter gets in touch by email and mostly gets a co-operative response. This month, for example, Geoff and Laura Thompson are featured. However, sometimes no response is forthcoming, even after more than one attempt to make internet contact. This silence has to be respected and not pursued. Some folk prefer to remain incognito. The reason for this little paragraph is the realisation that an email from might head straight for the Spam, if there are any relative newcomers out there, perhaps feeling overlooked, please check your trash bin!

Ask no questions hear no lies


Newsletter November


Merv the swerve

As Merv Coombs is known in some quarters, has captured the limelight in two worlds recently. First, on America’s tricky 4th., he got his first Spanish hole-in-one with the aid of his trusty 9-wood and the nearby tree.
Then, instead of celebrating in his usual style, or maybe as a result of so doing, he had a stone removed from his gall bladder and, even as these words appear on the screen, the self same bladder is being removed! Which sounds a strange sequence of events but doubtless the medics know what they are about. Congratulations Merv, and get better soon..

A gentle reminder

Most of the photographs and pictures in the newsletter can be enlarged by simply clicking on them, thanks to the skills of our very friendly Webmaster, Jose.

For the benefit of those who don’t read emails

Please be aware that the AGM has had to be postponed and replaced by an unexpected EGM on which it should be possible to report later in this issue.

The AGM will now take place on Tuesday 13th December. Jenny will be sending out formal notice as usual.

Other date changes caused by the Alps Tour mean that there will be no competition on Tuesday December 6th., it being brought forward to Monday the 5th. Nor will there be any weekend competition on December 11th. This will now take place on Thursday 8th.
Last but by n o means least, please be reminded that the Captains’ Farewell Dinner is still scheduled for the evening of Friday December 11th.

Feline Fancy

News that past Captain and cat lover Sonya Foster has enlarged her collection would seem to have some substance.

Newsletter November


The blues are getting younger

From January 1st 2017 male members over the age of 65 will be permitted to play off the blue tees in competitions, their handicaps being adjusted in line with the slope tables. However, once a blue always a blue. No chopping and changing. All qualifying events to be embraced. Except at the weekends when, in social play, they can opt to play off the tees of the day and their full handicap. An email from Jenny Chesterton, our Secretary, has been distributed on the subject and those who qualify should try and read it.

We live and learn

In one of our local papers, which reads more like a Council Minute Book than an entertaining vehicle, the word “convoked” was used and had this scribbler scratching his head. Thanks to our 1792 page Readers Digest Universal Dictionary, one of the favourites on the shelf above the computer screen, the meaning is now known. Perhaps Jenny will convoke the AGM in due course?

Picture rationing

It may have been noticed, especially by those who might have expected to appear, that a number of photographs had to be left out last month. There were a number of reasons for this, and thought is being given to the future. October was a busy month what with the Medal Finals and then Members’ Festival Week. Text is not a problem because it is presented properly typed and requires no corrections. Just changing the type face size and colour to match the Resort standards. What takes up the Webmaster’s time though is editing the photographs, sizing and positioning them. Another factor, being honest and open, is that repetitive pictures, eg., prize giving’s, can get a bit boring? Especially if the Captains appear in them all! Nothing personal intended. Increasing prizes down to a 5th place hasn’t helped either. So, Jose, the Captains and your editor are giving further thought to the matter and hope to come up with an acceptable solution. Had the editor the skills to edit and position the pictures himself it would solve the problem, and of course he does this domestically. The Resort though, want the web site to look professional, and not amateurish. Cutting out the Captain is not enough if his arm can still be seen round a winner’s shoulders!

Talking of Vic Hilliard

Presumably encouraged by the fact that no member has yet cancelled their subscription to the newsletter despite his re-vamping of “I dreamed a dream” last month, and using the weight of his office, he has now put forward another test of the editor’s patience and sympathy. Below, with some reluctance, but out voted by both Vic and Lilian, appears





The difficulty was in not knowing the song, thus making it mentally difficult to fit Vic’s words to any music. However, subsequent research reveals that the song was written by Secret Garden(!!) and the Official Video has been watched by 40 million viewers. Now 40 million + 1. After the first hearing of John Groban’s version words like “sad” and “dirge like” came to mind. In the interest of fair play a second run through lead one to accept that it might be seen as romantic, uplifting even but, a bit like going to church, one wishes it were more lively at times. Happier. If this is to become a monthly habit, Vic, perhaps something by Chas and Dave might make a welcome change?

Newsletter November


Frustrating return from inactivity

Campo Asia was in stunning condition on Tuesday, the 8th., when 18 teams of four met in a Stableford competition. The greens, slicked up for the forthcoming Alps Tour, were a challenge, as was the so called “rough”, but the weather was lovely and there could have been few excuses. Unfortunately this participant had to call it a day at the turn, but saw out the round enjoying, not for the first time, the improved consistency of David Moody and a rather remarkable performance by Stuart Bewley. Playing off a handicap of 8 he really struggled to scratch six points together on the outward nine, only to come back in 2 over par gross and add 20 points to his total. Funny old game! Nice to watch though. Better than Armenia v Montenegro in their World Cup Qualifier!

1st. 37 Paula Lansdowne (cut 1.5 = 29)
2nd. 32 Monica Peters
3rd. 29 Connie Maphar-Massar

1st. 35 David Evans (cut 0.3 = 14.9)
2nd. 34 Arthur O’Connor (on handicap)
3rd. 34 John Crombie

Unfortunately, and for the first time in memory, not one of the above was available to collect their wine or have their picture taken. Not perhaps as long as the Chicago Clubs had to wait for their World Series baseball title, but usually one or two are on parade. Incidentally, can you have a World title when no other countries play baseball?

Fitzsimmons trophy

It has always been traditional for Captains, Past and Present, to hold an exclusive competition followed by an indulgent meal. After the unfortunate and premature demise of Philip Fitzsimmons, a trophy in his memory goes to the winner. This year Alan Jewett’s 35 points earned him the award and a place on the clubhouse wall. Close on his heels were Brian Farmer(34) and Bob Gordon(33).

Newsletter November
Alan Jewett
Newsletter November
Brian Farmer


Other spoils were distributed as follows:
Carol Rees – Longest Drive Ladies
Bob Gordon – ditto Men
Judi Lentelink – Nearest the Pin Ladies
Vic Hilliard – ditto Men
Merv Coombes 31 – Spouses Competition

Newsletter November
Carol Rees
Newsletter November
Bob Gordon


Newsletter November
Judi Lentelink
Newsletter November
Vic Hilliard


Newsletter November
Merv Coombes


Participants report the weather as ideal, Asia in good condition, a snack lunch bag provided by Management and, to round off a lovely day, “Pre-dinner drinks in the hotel foyer, followed by a great dinner with copious wine and other alcoholic beverages”. A regular and familiar statement!

Welcome to the Thompsons

Wish that all newcomers were as forthcoming and helpful! There is not much the editor can add to the following comprehensive submission.

“Geoffrey James Thompson (66) and Laura Thompson (just a little older) joined La Cala on 1st September 2016 as full members.They live up on Real Altavista in a penthouse overlooking the magnificent La Cala Golf Resort.

Geoff (a born Scot) spent the formative years of his life in Preston Lancashire as did Laura who was born and raised there.

Geoff’s initial hobby interests were dictated in the most part by his father and grandfather who were both Brass Band players. Geoff played in a Championship Section Band (founded by his grandfather in 1926) from the age of 11 yrs culminating in 1980 with a British Open Championship Trophy which capped his future career as a musician…….. Geoff had joined Her Majesty’s armed forces in 1968 as a musician (Staff Band Royal Corps of Transport) before being medically discharged with a heart problem which has finally resulted in his posting to La Cala upon retirement. Having left the army, Geoff spent the next 43 years in food manufacturing in various senior roles in Sales & Marketing finishing up with 15 years in Aberdeen as Sales & Marketing Director of a business selling dead fish to the major retailers in the U.K. and Europe.

Geoff was 9 years the Honorary Secretary of a club in Preston called Ingol Golf Club which is where he met the lovely Laura who was herself a member of the club. Laura had spent her time from school as a hairdresser and owned her own business in Preston until she moved with Geoff to Aberdeen. Both were members at Royal Montrose until Laura left the game for 7 years to look after her blind mother whom they moved to Scotland to be near. Laura and Geoff were married in 1991 on Valentines Day and have just celebrated their silver wedding this year in Rome watching England beat Italia in the six nations rugby championship.

Both spent a great deal of their spare time playing golf and Geoff in his younger days forced his way down to 5 handicap, alas he has spent the last two decades forcing his way back up to where he started back in 1980, a feat he accomplished just a few weeks ago.

Laura and Geoff left Scotland and indeed the UK in 2013 and moved permanently to Southern Spain spending their first year at Las Colinas, before moving to Buena Vista, Nr El Higueron for the next couple of years……during this period, both became members at El Chaparral and recently left to join La Cala, a decision they both believe was too long in the making.

Laura has already made her mark by winning the opening qualifying Stableford on 1st November.”

Newsletter November
Geoff & Laura


Golfus Annus Horribilis

Apologies to Her Majesty but Saturday 12th., added another chapter to a golfing year which will go down in Perry history as the most frustrating ever, assuming no miracles that is. Yesterday, keen to earn some Brownie points, a few small domestic chores were undertaken, including re-setting one of the kitchen fridges. Wrongly! As the flooded kitchen floor confirmed this morning. Inside was still dripping merrily away. Ice cubes had returned to their virgin state. Ice cream was more like a smoothie. The only plus was that the walls and ceiling of the freezer were completely clear of the built up frost. Crack of dawn apologies for absence were emailed to playing partners before the mopping up task began. Sods Law being what it is the weather was perfect for golf, Europa was in excellent shape, and everyone thoroughly enjoyed themselves. Constantly reminding one of this when reporting for cameraman duty at prize giving. Almost a superfluous appearance because not one of the six winners from Tuesday were present!

Jenny Chesterton orchestrated the administration and presented the prizes, those earning rewards and a click of the camera button after the Sandwich Stableford were:

1st. 100 Les Wicks, Roy Davies, Jan Debrauwer.
2nd. 98 George Kirk, Louis Lentelink, Jill Davies (3 only)
3rd. 96 Martin Hornsby, Peter Robinson, Mike Robbins, Helena Widegren

Newsletter November
l-r: Jan, Les, Roy


Newsletter November
l-r: Jill, Louis, George
Newsletter November
l-r: Martin, Helena, Peter, Mike


Just to continue a personal lament let us kill off the subject of what really is descending into a miserable golfing year. A heavy cough and cold gripped tight during the night but one reported for Medal duty at 0930. A seven, eight and lost ball made it clear that a mistake had been made so an apologetic withdrawal followed. Lilian summoned Helicopters who prescribed a whole variety of pills, potions and even an inhaler, a first in our home. No golf for ten days was the advice and, with a smile, no paragliding. A real choker. The inhaler presented problems in that although the instructions were followed nothing seemed to happen. Twice this occurred. Having checked a video on line the explanation was clear. It was being held upside down!

Newsletter November

The Zenetheers emerge

Two photographs have emerged under the heading of “Tropical Night” but without further information. Looks a bit like a team event?

Newsletter November
Newsletter November

The caption on the third picture was Rock Chicks so an element of salaciousness crept into the left frontal. Nor did the photograph disappoint. It is not often we see three respected members of our female community dressed so engagingly. The dancing would have been worth a video?

Newsletter November

Senior Swansong

Newsletter November
l-r: Roy, Richard, Arthur

Richard Hinds is to retire as Captain of our Mens’ Senior team and, subject to approval at the AGM, will be succeeded by David Moody. Our thanks go to the jovial West Ham supporter for a job well done, assisted by Roy Davies and Arthur O’Connor as his Vice Captains. Two matches against Parador saw the end of the season, a 0-3 defeat away being followed by a satisfying win 2-1 at home. Richard and Arthur were joined by Manfred Wetzel, John Youngs, George Kirk, and Derek Steele in the team. Unfortunately the pictures weren’t too good but the heart of the organisation came out OK and are shown below. The visiting Captain made a point of saying how lucky we are here to be playing on such good courses with such wonderful vistas, something there is a tendency to take for granted at times. As indeed have we learned to add Ibex qualities to our game The other pictures were of the dining table showing what the team does best – socialise, eat and drink! Some sides are super competitive whilst others, like us, are more intent on enjoying the game and the company. A philosophy which will have David Moody’s full support.

The Alps Tour Qualifying School

260 players from 21 different countries have competed this year. 70 have already qualified for the final stage of this competition, leaving 74 spots to be filled from stage one on December 11 and 12. Play will be on all three courses and the Final Event, 54 holes, played from 15-17th December. Any member interested in assisting the running of things should register in the pro-shop as soon as possible.

Missing Faces

The good ship “Pulmandour Zenith” has been ploughing the Mediterranean sea carrying a passenger cargo which included more than a few of our more sociable members. It is understood that the very reasonably priced cruise included all alcoholic beverages so it will be disappointing if there are no juicy tales to hear when they return.

The team sheet for the Medal on Asia, Tuesday 15th., reflected the absence of “regulars” but even so there was a familiar ring about thos heading the final leaderboard.

1st. 76 Connie Maphar-Massar
2nd. 79 Carol Rees (on handicap)
3rd. 79 Dorothee Schmidt

1st. 74 Alan Jewett
2nd. 75 Les Wicks
3rd. 77 John Brooks
There were no handicap changes.

Newsletter November
Newsletter November

The absent Zenithers

Could not be held totally responsible for the limited turn out on Sunday, America, 19th. Maybe the Manchester United v Arsenal match on TV drew some away? Anyway, only 32 players were on parade, playing in an AM/AM/AM which threw up the following first three teams;

1st. 98 Mike Fisher, Erling Johnsen, Sylvia Robbins, Jenny Chesterton.
2nd 96 Derek Steele, Peter Robinson, Maddie Brooks, Jill Davies.
3rd.93 Ursula Wetzel, Libby Robinson, John Brooks, Roy Davies

Newsletter November
Half the team missing!
Newsletter November
Derek, Jill & Maddie
Newsletter November
l-r: Roy, John, Libby, Ursula

Thanks to Jenny for taking the pictures this week. Not that there were too many “winners” around to shoot.

Beautiful English

A man called an old school friend and asked him what he was doing. He replied that he was working on “Aqua-thermal treatment of ceramics, aluminium and steel under a constrained environment.” The caller was impressed until on enquirying further, learned that his friend was washing dishes, with hot water, under his wife’s supervsion.

A wet off !

We don’t get many, living where we do, but Tuesday’s competition, scheduled for the 22nd., never got under way. Not a ball struck in anger The overnight deluge continued unabated and made the official decision predictable and unavoidable. Andalucia, it seems, is suffering more than most provinces.

Newsletter November


Followed by a repeat performance

Cometh the weekend cometh more rain. Those seeking their regular injection of Bramble were disappointed. As were those looking forward to any form of dry golf. Curiously enough it is reported that the Thursday Roll Ups were played in very acceptable conditions. Saturday the 26th. came and went. End of report.

All’s well that ends well?

Sorry says the Rain Goddess, as well she might.

Newsletter November


Extraordinary general meeting

This took place in Salon Picasso, 1600 hours on the dot. There was a surprisingly good attendance considering the golf cancellation and the mini-agenda. It later emerged that quite a few members were without domestic Wi-Fi, BigLan having gone on the blink and being inaccessible at weekends, so it was not entirely suprising to see many of the attendees clutching iPads or mobiles. Controversial is not a word that comes to mind here. The proceedings were brief. The decisions unanimous. Alison Kirk and Peter Edstrom, already proposed as Vice Captains for 2017, were immediately appointed for the remainder of 2016 and, as per the La Cala Golf Club Constitution, will become Captains on January 1st 2017.

The AGM, scheduled for November 26th was formally cancelled (and will now take place on December 13th, after play).

The month in limited action

Newsletter November


Car Park infringements

Unless some law enforcement agency is brought into play the recently introduced yellow lines appear not to be serving as a serious deterrent?

Newsletter November


Farewell S6 Jax

It is with considerable sadness that we bid farewell to numberplates given as a surprise gift from Lilian when retirement brought the need to buy one’s own car, after so many years of company transport. Not a great fan of personalised number plates it took a bit of mental adjustment but whilst most worked out the Jack’s bit few ever got the Essex. A stamping ground of many, many years. Growing fear of the 183 day rule has led to the change but it is difficult to envisage the same sort of relationship with 6994JVC.

Well done Andy Murray but …

… why must you wear that dreary, funereal kit? Congratulations on reaching No 1 in the world, a tremendous achievement, but one doubts the all black attire will set any fashion trends. Somewhere it claimed to be representative of the boot camp regime in which he lives his focused life. Fine. In the boot camp but not on centre court, please? Coupled with facial expressions suggesting haemorrholdal agony he is a hard champion to love.

Newsletter November


Unlike the languid, patient giant Argentinian Juan Martín del Potro who dug so deep for almost five hours to help win the Davis Cup for his country

Newsletter November


Housebound, listless, and without BigLan for five days at time of writing, has meant more TV than usual so, on a lower scale, one would like to pay tribute to the referee in Malaga’s game against Osasuna. He gave two penalties for shirt tugging/wrestling and for that he needs a reward for bravery. If only he has set a trend but that would be too much to ask?
Whilst side tracking from golf for a paragraph or two it was pleasing to see Nico Rosberg clinch the F1 World Title, and no great surprise to see Lewis Hamilton in the role of villain again.

The Seniors from a male perspective

Some of this will be well known to many but it is nice to have it all spelled out for us before a new campaign gets under way and a new Organiser begins to influence direction. Meanwhile a big Thank You to Richard Hinds for leading the troops so enjoyably.

“The men’s Seniors La Liga consists of twelve teams from along the Costa Del Sol with Alcadaisa and Añoreta being the western and eastern extremities respectively. Each team consists of six players and plays the others in both home and away fixtures.
At the end of each year there is a La Liga Seniors Finale held to present the trophy to the winning team. The club hosting the Finale chooses the game format for the day.
This year the Finale was held at the Parador with about 100 players enjoying a Texas Scramble.
The day culminated in a meal being held in the Parador Hotel and the trophy being presented to Alhaurin.

To play in the Seniors La Liga in 2017, members need to be 50 years old and be Spanish Federated. David Moody will be the La Cala Seniors Captain next year.”

Newsletter November


Romance in the air

Congratulations to Dean Moore and Alison who blighted their troth on November 9. It is a pleasure to include pictures of the happy couple and their celebratory cake.

Newsletter November
Newsletter November


Ladies enjoy themselves

Without internet for almost a week now this newsletter has become a real struggle so please forgive the rather basic report on this end –of-season “party” attended by no less than 32 of our women folk, only three of whom didn’t actually play. Even they got prizes though!

Newsletter November

Guess who won Nearest the Pin? Right first time. Val Wicks!!

Newsletter November

The Bramble, version unknown, was won with 89 points by the team of Carol, Jenny, Sue & Kathy who look understandably pleased with themselves?

Newsletter November

A mere point adrift were Wendy, Helena, Hetty & Connie

Newsletter November

A quite respectable 86 points earned Third Place prizes for Karen, Rosa, Val and Maggie.

Goodbye November

Still on a social theme it can be recorded, albeit in absentia, that El Soto GC entertained a goodly number of our OAP members, all of masculine tendencies, on the last night of the month. In contrast to the weather it proved a most enjoyable occasion, and late one for some, although details have been difficult to come by. Curiously(?)there appear to have been no cameras in action so pictures are rarer than Echidna puppies.

Not ideal but better than nothing

Muddy balls, sodden patches, lots of pitch marks, and rain lurking. Not the best of conditions and, if truthful, not envied by someone confined to warm, dry barracks. Leading results were;

1st. 34 Maggie Coombes
2nd. 33 Sonya Foster (on handicap)
3rd. 33 Jackie Rainbow (on handicap)

1st. 37 Les Wicks (cut 0.6 to 12.2)
2nd. 37 Geoff Thompson (cut 0.6 to 16.9)
3rd. 34 Cees Lagerwerf

Competition played on Campo America.

Royal Recognition

We don’t hear from Her Majesty all that often so it is nice to be able to end this month’s edition with a royal message.

Newsletter November
Newsletter November


Newsletter November

Finally, seasonally, traditionally, and the last opportunity of 2016, a friendly message from the Editor. May I wish all the La Cala Golf Resort team, not least Jose, webmaster and bacon saver, plus all members, near or far, A VERY HAPPY CHRISTMAS AND A HEALTHY AND PEACEFUL NEW YEAR. I hope my “scribbling” has not caused offence and may, occasionally at least, been enjoyable reading?

Newsletter November

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