I’m back in Chicago after my trip to San Diego for the holidays. The weather wasn’t ideal while I was there, but it was a vast improvement from the dropping temperature here in Chicago. I was able to play three rounds while in San Diego and for the most part I was happy with the results. I played two of my rounds with a big group of friends in a best ball format and contributed the majority of my shots to the team. We made some birdies, a handful of pars and one too many bogies to win against the other teams. I was happy with the way I played for being off the course for nearly two full months.
It is amazing how quickly your game can go away when you aren’t hitting balls and playing every day. It is also amazing how quickly some of it can come back when you have the chance to hit balls on a consistent basis. As soon as I landed in San Diego I went home to unpack and put my golf shoes on and went to the range. I got three solid range sessions in before my first full round and it helped a bunch. My full swing was in decent shape and my short game was surprisingly sharp. Where I left the most strokes on the course was my putting. I just didn’t have a good feel for my touch on the greens and it cost me about 6 – 7 strokes a round. I’m not overly worried about this because with some steady practice it will turn around.
The one round I did play on my own was a very early morning round with a group of guys who were in town from Northern California and Chicago strangely enough. I could tell the one guy was from Chicago because he was the only person crazy enough to wear shorts to the course at 6:40am. Needless to say, I liked him immediately. My round started off with a couple fairways, GIR and a few three putts. I wasn’t upset and was hitting the ball fairly straight. I made a couple of scramble pars near the turn and was in decent shape. The back nine turned up two balls OB which pretty much sealed the deal for me and stuck me in the high 80s. It was disappointing, but I also realize it could have been much worse.
My takeaway from this trip to San Diego was mainly that my game is not that far off. I need to keep up my chipping and putting and find a way to keep my full swing in shape. I am going to try to work with my guy Mike a bit more each month and suck up the cold weather at the range a few times to stay sharp. I have a 5 day golf trip in March with my brother-in-law that has us playing Pinehurst #2, Tobacco Road and a few courses in Myrtle Beach! I’m excited for the trip, but I have a lot of work to do to get my scores down close to breaking 80 by then. Here is to a lot of hard work in the next few months to drop some strokes in the bitter winter cold!