Golf: What, No half-way house?

2010-11-18 00:00

I WAS chatting to a friend and fellow golfer who had just returned from a holiday in the United Kingdom. He was fortunate enough to play golf on some of the well-known old courses. He described how surprised he was when he discovered that there was no half-way house at those old golf courses and he had to play 18 holes without a break for refreshment.

In Scotland and England at the traditional old 18-hole courses you will often find that there is no half-way house. This is because the ninth green is probably the furthest from the club house. Remember that golf is played over two nines, which is known as out and in. On certain links courses, the out nine is mostly with the prevailing wind and the in nine is against it. With no half-way house there is no reason to stop, so if you do play on one of these courses, and you believe that you cannot last four and a half to five hours without anything to eat or drink, you will have to buy something beforehand and take it with you.

The figure which seems to be quoted nowadays for a round of golf is two hours 10 minutes per nine holes and 10 minutes at the half-way.

One can understand why there is always emphasis on avoiding slow-play but it is difficult really to enjoy anything when one is continually rushing. Playing nine holes in 130 minutes is not easy to do without riding in a cart. It is roughly 14 minutes per hole. The problem is, this doesn’t really allow for searching for a ball. It only needs a couple of errant shots and the lost time could not be made up without running or missing out on the half-way house, and that wouldn’t be a popular option.


Victoria Country Club had their Carbineers Day on Saturday played as a combined Stableford. The winners on a count-out with 76 points were S. Verdon and F. Vermaak. Second were R. Stone and R. van Niekerk.

Maritzburg Golf Club held a three-ball Stableford alliance competition on Saturday, coupled with the mixed Goodwill Trophy. The winning combination on a count-out on 86 points was H. Stokes, J. Hattingh and G. Grant. Second place went to U. Vosloo, L. Daff and M. Wooldridge. The Goodwill Trophy was won by W. Carruthers, T. Plenderleith and K. Roberts.

From the 19th hole

Several men are in the locker room of a golf club. A cellphone on a bench rings and a man presses the loudspeaker function and begins to talk.

Golfer: “Hello.”

Woman: “Hi Honey, it’s me. Are you at the club?”

Golfer: “Yes.”

Woman: “I’m here at the mall and I’ve found this beautiful leather coat. It’s only R1 000. Is it okay if I buy it?”

Everyone else in the locker-room stops to listen.

Golfer: “Sure, go ahead if you like it that much.”

Woman: “I also stopped by the Mercedes dealership and saw the new 2010 models. I saw one I really liked.”

Golfer: “How much?”

Woman: “R390 000.”

Golfer: “Okay, but for that price I want it with all the options.”

Woman: “Great! Oh, and one more thing, the house I wanted last year is back on the market. They’re asking R2 950 000 for it.”

Golfer: “Go ahead and give them an offer of R2 800 000. They will probably take it. If not, we can go the extra R150 000.”

Woman: “Okay. I’ll see you later. I love you so much.”

Golfer: “Bye. I love you too.”

The man hangs up. The other men in the locker room are staring at him in astonishment.

He turns and asks: “Does anyone know who this phone belongs to?”

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