Yesterday was the first day that I played a round at the country club I joined for $3,700. If I can play 50 rounds by December 31st, I’d say I got my money’s worth. I expect to play closer to 20.

These types of posts can give the reader a sense of understanding of the feeling I had when rolling up with no idea of expectations. Will everyone be wearing pants? Did I need to schedule the round? Do I give my clubs to the caddy master? Where is the range? Do I play through if I’m pushing the group in front? Dumb golf etiquette, but the difference between good and bad.

So I get there and take my clubs to the pro shop and say that the website didn’t let me sign up as a single. He said it’s fine. Can I go right to the first tee? He said, “you got it.” This is not a picture of their pro shop but I wanted to set the mood.

There’s a big dining area on the 18th that people were sitting at. 1 is off to the side and at this point i’m still feeling a bit uncertain. I wanted to get off the first tee and start playing. The first hole is 389 and I didn’t want to get off to a wild start. I hit a 4 iron 185 into some red stakes on left. Fantastic. Just get off the first tee. I start looking for my ball and found 2 other Pro V’s. I dropped and hit a layup out of some thick rough to 50 yards, hit a nice sand wedge on the green, 2 putt for double. We’re off.

There’s a twosome ahead of me at this point and I’m a bit uncertain of how to proceed. They are slow. How slow? Patrick Cantlay slow. They seem like relatively good golfers, but this pace is not me. I start playing 2 balls on this long ass par 5 where I sliced 2 balls into some houses and both were amazingly saved by trees. I can tell at this point that I’m going to be on their asses the entire time unless I make a move. I did put one on the green on this 3rd hole below which is irrelevant to the story.

I put up with it until hole 6 which is a 309 yard par 4 with a blind tee shot. I had played 2 balls on the par 3 before it while they were teeing off. I believed they had to be passed driving distance. I hit one of the best 4 irons of my day and I walk up to see that I must have landed on them as my ball is 50 yards ahead. I apologize and pass them. They were completely understanding. Thank heavens.

I play up to 14 and then hit another group ahead of me and it was raining so I quit for the day. The course is challenging. Instead of an approach shot that lands to the right of the green, it hits a huge tree and ricochets into a hazard (#12 below). Or it lands in some 5 foot deep bunker. Drives are tighter as well. It’ll be a good exercise in improvement and I’ll have time to figure it out as the days go on. Should be fun.