An Eagle Has Landed…On My Scorecard!!

Well, yes – a golf post for a change  (this blog is titled Life, Golf, Miniatures & Other Distractions after all)!

Please note that normally I would not just post a mundane golf story about myself.  So, apologies in advance if I seem to be a bit self-focused here.  I would not want to be too narcissistic, but some background for the reader may help.

I have been playing golf, mostly as a hacker, since I was 12.   My late grandfather (who drove an M24 tank in WWII and was a hero of mine) got me started.  He was absolutely terrible – he would be lucky to break 110 or even 120 for 18 holes.  He did imbue me with a love of the greatest game – and I carry that with me to this day.  I still have golf balls of his that I carry in my bag to honor his gift to me.

In the Army, I played when I could, and even joined clubs at Ft. Rucker, Alabama, at Ft. Belvoir, VA, and even the Canadian Forces course at Lahr in Germany.  That Canadian course was fun as for one you had CF-18 fighters zooming overhead (quite low) and secondly it was the only place to be able to get Canadian beer like Labatts (the Germans would not allow it to be sold and the US had only American and German beer for sale at the Class VI store).  I left the Army in 1992, and I did not play very often until 1998.

At that point I had moved to East Brookfield, MA, and was happy to discover that there was a golf course 0.3 miles away!  The first tee was closer to my house than it was to the first green!  That was Bay Path Golf Course – and I was a member there for 21 years.  I was playing nearly 70 rounds a year (mostly at Bay Path), which is a lot when you consider that our Massachusetts weather is only good for golf from April to October for the most part.  I kept a spreadsheet of all my scores, just to track progress and focus on improving. One goal eluded me, that being getting an eagle.

For those of you non-golfers, an eagle (not to be confused with my Eagle Warriors) is a score that is two shots under par.  On a par three, it would be a hole-in-one.  On a par 4, it would be a 2, etc.  At Bay Path, it became a running joke that I had not gotten an eagle, even just from luck.  I came close several times, only to be denied.  I even hosted a pool for charity where members could bet whether I would get an eagle that year or not.  Most all bet “not” by the way.  Last year, Bay Path closed (sadly), forcing me to join a new club, Quail Hollow in Oakham, MA. It’s about a 15 minute drive from home.  It’s a nice club, but a much more difficult course than Bay Path.

According to my spreadsheet, by last Tuesday, June 9th, 2020, I had taken 115,136 plus strokes since 1999 with never an eagle.  That equates to 1,293 rounds – not including any scrambles by the way,  So effectively, that’s about 5,172 hours of golf – or 215.5 days of golf!  Many birdies, but no eagles!

stats (2)
Data as of the morning of 6/9/2020

Even more sadly, play was delayed here because of COVID-19.  So while normally I would try to play in March or April, I did not get to play or even practice until late May.  My game does not rely on any real talent – it’s based on hard work and practice.  I also track my golf progress here for myself on the blog (see the main menu as well).  So I had little expectations about early play and knocking off any rust.

There is a group that plays on Tuesdays at Quail that I joined up with called “Pit’s Crew” after the guy that runs it, Pit Caron.  We play a 4-man scramble.  On June 9th, we approached the 3rd hole, a par-4, 249 yard hole.  I was the “B” player, and drove my ball right next to the green on the left fringe – maybe three feet off of it.  For me this was a very good result as the fairway is quite narrow and the green is guarded by a deep bunker in the front.  I then used my 56 degree wedge and chipped my second shot – it went up, up – it rolled – and plunk, it dropped in nicely!

EAGLE!!!!!

I was happy that one of my teammates was a fellow former Bay Path golfer, Jim Kularski, who was our “A” man.  It was gratifying that he got to see me accomplish something that he knew well that I had been trying to get for so very long.  I also had on lucky golf gear from my West Point reunion last year.  While it was a scramble, I played the same ball (a found Titleist Pro-V1 that I was using so as not to lose one of my preferred Titleist ProV1X’s), from the same position, so I am counting the eagle as having been my first.  After all, at this pace, my next one will be in 2060 when I am 98…

Oh yeah, we also came in first place out of 18 teams.

So here’s some pics (thanks to Jim Kularski for the pictures – again, more to commemorate than to brag – but like I always say – it ain’t braggin’ if ya do it!

1 Eagle in!
IT’S IN THE HOLE FOR AN EAGLE 2!  (note the mask too!)  I am holding my putter along with my wedge – no need for the putter on that hole that day!
2 Get the Eagle ball!
Get that ball for safekeeping!
3 Get the Eagle ball!
I was sooooo happy to pull this ball from the hole!  And nice Army hat huh?
4 it's a 2!
It’s a two!
5 HAPPY!
Unfortunately I could NOT stop smiling for days!

Thanks for indulging me by looking!

Author: Mark A. Morin

This site is where I will discuss stuff that I find interesting and that includes family, friends, golf, gaming, and Boston sports!

24 thoughts on “An Eagle Has Landed…On My Scorecard!!”

  1. I’ve really enjoyed the Eagle warriors you have been painting. The Aztecs/Incas/Mayan cultures have been of interest to me most of my life and your painting and comments remind me of two great weeks I spent exploring in Mexico a long while ago. Congratulations on this achievement in golf and in regards to your painting!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks Pat, and by extension we’re both young ( I think you’re just 6 and a half years older than I am!). Why don’t you play anymore? Too many cavalrymen to paint maybe? Tough to find time for both – I know!

      Liked by 2 people

      1. 6 and a half😳it must be all that fresh air when your out playing golf that keeps you looking so young, yeah to many things to do in the small amount of time left over after work !I might get back into it when I retire up the country next year , they have a nice golf course so maybe I’ll be doing a golf blog on how not to play😉😁

        Liked by 2 people

  2. I really enjoyed that post Mark and so glad you got your eagle! Haven’t played golf in years although the clubs are still out in the garage. A few guys have been on at me to play, not that I was ever any good but I did enjoy it. Maybe when things ease over here I might hit the golf range and see how it goes from there. Now why wasn’t I surprised you kept a spreadsheet?! 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  3. For something you’ve waited so long for that’s quite an achievement, Mark, so well done you! 🙂 I understood absolutely none of the technical terms, but because you chucked in some simple maths I could follow it well enough, and you did manage to get in a link to your wargaming stuff as well!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Congratulations Mark, have never played golf, and physically could not even try, but I can imagine that the want of getting an Eagle pales in comparison to achieving one

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Congratulations mate, My youngest wanted to play golf a few years back so we took him to the local club and got him some lessons, its a lovely place my wife and I would sit and have breakfast while he was having his lessons, till i decided to have a go myself so had a few lessons. Now I have never had any interest in golf, but I did really enjoy knocking that little ball about, he sadly lost interest after a while, and I couldn’t afford to invest the sort of money I would have needed to to get any better myself, so that was that. but I can see the appeal.

    I plan on playing “crown green bowls” when I retire.

    Cheers Roger.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Roger- I always learn something new from your posts and comments. At first I think that crown green bowls was a nod to smoking Mary Jane, until I did a Wikipedia search a saw it was an actual game! Obviously much less overhead than golf!

      Like

  6. Good on you mate. I must admit, i understand nothing about gholf as where I am from it was always associated with being a rich snob with so much time on their hands that the can walk after a small white ball the whole day. No offense meant. I have tried my arm at a few swings and after enough swings i can honestly say that it is notmy thing.

    I do like how enthusiastic people can get over personal milestones and love to learn what my fellow blogger’s other hobbies entitle. Thanks for sharing

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, golf is a very difficult game to master, though no one I know ever has. Lots of strategy, but the only game where you call penalties on yourself, so I always cherished that too. Here it’s not a rich man’s game, though there are definitely high end courses that are expensive to play. I play with mostly fellow middle class guys, a lot of them retired.

      No offense at all, I really appreciate your recognition of this rather weird milestone! Glad you enjoyed the post.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. It’s all gobbledygook to me brother but I’m glad you pulled your ball out of your hole and found an Eagle hehe. Nah, seriously mate well done. Impressive that you’ve kept track of your strokes/swings since 1999 too mate. Impressive and a little mad too but I like it hehe.

    Liked by 1 person

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