Brora Golf Club
A dry and windy day. A very windy day. And rather cold. An authentic home of golf. Sheep and cattle graze here, walker’s walk and golfers golf. Far from the rarefied and exclusive clubs of Surrey here is a home to everyone.
No time for a gentle opener the drama starts right away. Not a long hole but you drive into the valley and then climb to an angled green set into the dunes. The next demands a drive across the corner of the dunes. It is a lovely out and back layout across understated links land bisected by two streams. Heavenly. I was gaining on a group of Norwegians, as a single player. I pierced the heart of the 4th green as they left. A 3 iron drilled 150 yards to a couple of feet through 45 yards of wind, and a birdie. A hole to remember, so looking like a proper golfer I bestrode the tee and they enjoyed the eight that followed; sand, water, 3 putts everything that could go wrong did but they wished me well.
History repeated itself a few holes later. A birdie to alert the group ahead and a double bogey in their company. Trying to get ahead of the third group I sent my tee shot out to sea but what a great hole to turn around. I was losing 60 yards on my driver and three clubs elsewhere as I climbed into the wind. Going back must be easier.
It was not to be. Less disasters occurred as I played at my own pace but no glory either. Getting the ball to stop downwind requires skill and imagination to use the contours to your advantage. Unfortunately my imagination far exceeds my ability to hit the ball. And what was initially promising became rather ordinary. I suspect it was a little like negotiating with the EU. Setting off with fine ideals, hope and confidence only to be dragged down by the detail and a series of weak surrenders.
The 18th: Like negotiating with the EU
And it is never over until it is over. The last is a beast of a par 3 with steep banks front and back. On one side you Remain short and the other you Leave it long and it is very difficult to find the middle ground. I think Theresa May is still knocking it backwards and forwards across the green making no-one happy and holding up play.
And I don’t suppose Europe would let us pay £39billion to our favourite charity. Unlike Brora who were kind enough to support my appeal for Alzheimer’s Society and let me pay my green fee direct to AS. Sorry, I didn’t mean to get political but that 18th got to me and I wrote this in early May 2019.