The Monkey Match at Bermuda Dunes

I love Palm Springs for many reasons but especially for the quality of the golf courses. Almost as soon as we started to travel and play a lot of golf, we found the legendary course at Bermuda Dunes Golf Course and became members.

There is a lot of history that trails these beautiful twenty seven holes of traditional golf in the desert. The Bob Hope Classic was played here almost fifty times. Many celebrities and professionals enjoyed a golf game at Bermuda Dunes. Becoming a member allows you to play unlimited golf and enjoy the time spent with other members.

We met Alan and Jickey just by chance, as all of the morning members circled in their carts, ready to start the day. Lyle shouted hello as the beautiful pearl white custom golf cart cruised slowly by and came to a stop. Alan tossed us a grin and invited us to play. Game on.

That season we played a lot of golf together and as the snow crept over the mountain tops around us and the season changed to winter, we made plans to celebrate Christmas together. Of course we wanted to play some golf and Lyle had just the solution. Even though the clubhouse would be closed for Christmas day, we were given permission to play. Since we did not own a golf cart, we would have to walk the course. Lyle suggested we plan a short game, a monkey match, where each player chooses only one club from their bag to play every shot from driving to putting. Four couples were invited to the match and the game was on.

Everyone decided to walk, carrying only the one club they had chosen for the day. I chose a club that would give me some reasonable distance from the tee box of the par 4 holes but would also be forgiving enough to chip and putt. I chose my four hybrid. Lyle carried his six iron – still long on the drive, he played that club like a wedge around the greens.

It was a special day, colder than most in the desert. The sun shone very brightly and the grass was perfect. There was not another person playing anywhere on the course on this Christmas Day. The best part of the game was the walk between each shot with our friends. We spoke about long ago holiday traditions and golf game memories, including our most treasured club and why we chose the one club for this match up. We watched every shot from every player across skill level, ability and attitude. Our lesson on this magical day was accepting the results from the only club you were able to use. It was a glorious day, a humbling game.

My golf game always reveals a lesson and this Monkey Match Christmas game was no different. No matter our age or ability, we all have something to share. When you are open to friendship and connect with others, there is so much joy!

The true gift of the season was right there – walking the course, making memories, one club at a time.

always in friendship,

Wendy & Lyle

A Golf game to remember.

Receive And Accept.

 Yesterday, I played a round of golf I will always remember.

I am a true amateur,  joining this game late in life. My passion is obvious while I learn to be a better player, watching the best in the game I become a mimic.    I have always been an athlete of sorts, playing organized sports and training for physical strength but never playing golf. My grandparents loved this sport and I remember joining them on Sundays in front of the television as the tournament kept them both locked in for the afternoon, discussing players ability and the outcome. This was my introduction to golf.

Celebrating the year I turned fifty, I bought a set of golf clubs and went searching for my passion. It was a desire to play, spend time outside in nature and honor my grandparents. Since then, I have traveled and played golf in some of the most beautiful courses in North America and Mexico. #100daysofgolftrip

What makes a round of golf so special? There is a peace in that moment  when you take in your surroundings, smile and breathe deeply and and truly see your shot in your minds eye. Everything slows down, harmony and balance can create birdie chances.

On this special day, I was driving long and straight into the rising sun. My three wood was kind to me. My wedge shots were accurate and landed very close to the flag. I had many birdie chances. I accept that I am good enough, to use a very good golf ball that matches up with my Taylormade clubs and really improves my game. My spouse is my coach  and although it is not always easy to listen, I accept his advice to square up my club face with a strong grip and get turned through the swing. The lessons sometimes sound like criticism to me – I need to accept it and let it make me a better player. Sometimes I resist being told all the secrets,I just want to play my own way but as my game creeps closer to the forest edge and out of bounds, I need to pause and remember by accepting the lessons I can play the best game of my life.

Kevin Na is a PGA  golf professional who had a fierce, very public debate with his caddie at the 2018 Fort Worth Invitational tournament. After observing the results of players ahead of Na on the course, his caddie strongly advised against a particular shot going into the green on #9( Na’s final hole of the day). They argued loudly, Na played the shot he wanted anyway and holed out. He eventually went on to win the tournament with one of the best rounds of his career. Success.

Golf can be tough and frustrating and also peaceful and so smooth. Listen to the lessons and  celebrate one great shot. By doing my very best in each moment of the game, it is leading to my next best moment and a game to remember.

What we do today matters most. Enjoy it.

always in friendship,

Wendy

Golf Hawks Landing at The Orlando World Center Marriott

          Trust the Journey

We had been travelling for more than 160 days when we arrived in  Orlando, Florida early in April.  Although we play a lot of golf, this was our first time in the sunshine state. In the black beauty, we turned from International drive onto World Gateway Drive and soon pulled past the grand entrance to The Orlando World Center Marriott Hotel. Here we found Hawks Landing Golf Club.

It was a busy friendly start from the well stocked pro shop. Hot coffee and big smiles  greeted us at check in. There was a promise of a great day of golf as we passed grand trees bursting with magnolia flowers and hawks flying over our heads. There are 220 acres with a stunning convention center and hotel and Hawks Landing borders this resort on three sides. Looking into the distance a towering white outline reminds us just how close we are to the rest of Orlando,but all is forgotten inside the entrance to this beautiful golf course. Here, the course is lined with hundreds of palm trees and defended by water and sandy white bunkers. There are wooden bridges that link many of the fairways to beautiful lush greens. Cranes are pacing many of the water hazards just fishing and the sky is brilliant and blue20180406_142203

Hawks Landing Golf Club was designed by Robert Cupp Jr and built in 1986. This 18 hole championship course undertook a redesign in 1998  and the result is a very tough slope rating. There is more than 6600 yards on this par 72 challenge and you will find water hazards on 15 of the 18 holes so pack some extra golf balls.  This layout is first class and the course has been rated 4 star by Golf Digest.

If you are interested in a virtual tour of the course , download the Hawks Landing app (hawkslandinggolf) where you can book tee times, see the local weather and find special offers. You may find golf getaway pkgs at http://www.mariott.com. We can suggest if you are planning to stay a few days, choose a golf package to attend clinics or classes at the Jack Nicklaus Academy of golf right on the property.

Hawks Landing Golf Club was a very convenient location with

great value for a quality golf course. We really appreciated the friendly service with lots of extra touches, like the basket of apples available at the turn. This gem blends challenging golf with the scenic natural beauty of Florida and it took our breath away as the sun started to set. It was an afternoon game to remember.

http://www.golfhawkslanding.com

always in friendship,

Lyle & Wendy

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