They began their quest at Kauri Cliffs, and spent an extended period of time in Australia before flying to the U.S. I met them at Kingston Heath and joined up with them again as they were coming through New Jersey. They were about as impressed with the New Jersey Turnpike as most people are, but it was good to see them again and we had a fabulous time, despite the fact that they made fun of my golf shoes and think I'm a sandbagger. 88 to 1.
Dodgy turned out to be quite a useful purchase for the crazy kiwis since it provided a backup when they have nowhere to stay overnight. They are doing their quest with a minimal amount of money. If they can't find a host for the night, then Dodgy it is. Thus far in their travels they have played Royal Melbourne, Cypress Point, San Francisco Golf Club, Riviera, Pine Valley, Winged Foot, Baltusrol and both Shinnecock and National Golf Links on the same day, with the lobster lunch! I tried to impress on them how lucky they were to be able to play them at all; that most folks never get the chance to play. Even more amazing, they have paid for only one greens fee thus far.
I don't know if you remember what you were doing when you were 25, but these two have maturity well beyond their years. They are observant, witty and have it all together. They are great company and very good golfers. I think their winning combination of traits makes them uniquely qualified to pull this journey off. Young professionals who are affable and articulate with serious golfing abilities. Plus, people generally have a fascination and fondness of Kiwis given their place in the world and charming accents. Can you imagine a couple of middle-aged Germans duffers trying to do this? Fat chance.
Their writing style is very good and it has provided a welcome relief every day to read their amusing posts and keep track of their travels. Some of their best examples are below:
1. In South Carolina: "A cantankerous swine of a woman hogged the shuffleboard table all night, so we didn’t get the chance to experience what looked like an interesting game."
2. "Sawgrass, really, is a deviant."
3. "As Dodgy pulled up at the TPC Louisiana track the hooter was going off to suspend play. "
4. Sleeping in Dodgy in Silicon Valley: "The state trooper that banged his 6 foot long torch on our window just as we’d got to sleep wasn’t too impressed. He probably thought we were glue sniffers. We’re not."
5. Traveling to Adelaide: "On these long straight roads the temptation is to cut loose, autobahn styles. Mike succumbed and was duly pinged by the South Australian Police Force; an unwelcome pouring of $220 down the drain."
We shall soon be closer to having the age old golf question answered. Can it be done? Can your body take golf every day for a year? Can your psyche? Can you retain your friendship and not kill your traveling companion? Will you be lucky enough to have flights run on time and not hit a thunderstorm? I wish them all the luck in the world and hope they are successful. They leave the United States tonight and are off to Scotland.
Godspeed and safe travels boys. Hope to see you in New Zealand this winter. Thanks for not burning the house down!