Do You Think We Will Be Playing Golf in December?
SO HOW are you all coping with the latest lockdown in England? This one feels very different, for all sorts of reasons. The first thing that strikes me is that in many ways is really doesn’t feel like a proper lockdown - I cannot quite get my head around how it is that certain shops are still being allowed to trade while others have had to close their doors until the beginning of December, at the earliest. It also seems to me that huge swathes of the population continue to break the rules. Every day I see people not wearing masks while mingling with others with whom they clearly don’t live.
And I still don’t understand why it is that we can mix with one other person from outside our own household for exercise but are not allowed to play golf in two balls. It doesn’t make sense to me.
The other big difference, of course, is that we are in November and it gets dark at 4.30pm. I don’t know about you, but I struggle with these shorter days. I am from Scotland but I have always hated this time of year - perhaps it is BECAUSE I am from Scotland. I am now a soft southerner, living in Suffolk, which is one of the driest parts of the UK. But we are close to the coast and that means there is almost always a cold wind coming in off the North Sea. Funnily enough, I hardly notice it when I am playing golf. But I am most certainly aware of it when I go out for my daily walks.
I am struck by the huge number of people who have continued to exercise this year. Having to spend so much time at home may well have affected our mental wellbeing but physically the nation must be fitter than it has ever been. I have lost lots of weight and now tip the scales below 11st for the first time in years - and am determined to keep that weight off. It is all about lifestyle. I have changed my diet, eliminating things like chips and potatoes. And do you know what? I don’t miss them. But I do miss being able to go out and hit a few golf balls, whether it be with friends or on the driving range, all the more so because I live on my own.
It is made all the worse after watching The Masters. There is something about Augusta that has always given me an itch that I need to scratch. It is a magnificent golf course and even in November it still looked like a picture that you want to frame and hang on your wall.
It is more difficult to motivate yourself to get outside at this time of year and I hold my hands up and admit that this week I have binge-watched the entire new series of The Crown. Ten episodes in two days. I know there are better things to be doing with my time - just about anything, actually. But you can only watch so many reruns of Dustin Johnson’s glorious performance to win his second major.
And when I look outside and see the rain belting down and the trees bent double as the wind howls and have to weigh up the choice between going out and getting drenched or staying in the warm then I am afraid that the latter option wins every single time.
When will we be out on the golf course again? To be honest, I am not convinced it will be anytime soon. I look around me and see people continuing to gather in large groups, disregarding all social distancing protocols, and it makes me wonder how on earth we are ever going to see the back of this cursed virus. Cases continue to rise, as does the daily death toll. Ask yourself;
Do you really believe that Boris Johnson is going to allow us to return to normality in December?
Can you seriously picture yourself on the golf course again in 2020?
Is your golf club giving you another month’s grace on your annual subscription?
Can clubs afford to do so?
I continue to practice my putting on the carpet and if I can ever find greens that play to the same pace I will prove that I am now deadly with straight, 10-foot putts. But I want to hit full shots and because I don’t have a garden I am unable to rig up a net and do so. However, my golf swing in the bedroom mirror does looks pretty good, albeit without a golf club. I don’t want to be smashing ceiling lights or putting holes in the walls by swinging with a club in my hands.
We have all got to just knuckle down, obey the rules and hope that enough people are doing the same thing in order to get Covid-19 under control. And, of course, there is some light on the horizon with the news that at least two vaccines are going into full-scale production. Who knows? This time next year we may even be back to normal.
Let us know what you think in the comments below. We woud love to hear your thoughts on what the short term future holds for golf.
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