I spent the week in Hilton Head and had a chance to play 2 nice golf courses – Barony and Oyster Reef. For the record, I really loved Oyster Reef, it was challenging and gorgeous – a terrific combination for sure.
I had a new box of Slazenger Raw balls with me and got out 2 boxes for that first round at Barony. On the 4th hole, a 364 yard (blue tees) par 4 I jacked my tee shot dead left into the rough. I hit a provisional ball a country mile but wanted to see if I could find my first ball and play it out of the woods.
After a few minutes of looking, I spotted 2 balls buried under some leaves, neither of which was my own. I traded the lost Slazenger for a Titelist and a TiTech and played my 2nd tee shot.
Cut to 2 days later, about halfway through my round at Oyster Reef. I hit an errant tee shot on #6, a gorgeous par 3 overlooking a lake butting up against the harbor. I managed to find my ball and as I looked down, I realized that it was that same Ti Tech that I had found at Barony. Some 18 holes later, I was still playing with the same ball!
I resolved to finish the Oyster Reef round with this scuffed mess of a ball. On the 8th (we played the back first, so this was the next to last hole of the day), I hit my 3 hybrid about 200 yards to the right, and headed towards trees. I yelled “no” and desperately wanted my new favorite ball of all time to bounce back from the forest. To my shock, the ball came bounding off a tree and landed on the green!
I knew I had a special ball, one that was going to do whatever it had to in order to stick with me, unlike those ungrateful Slazengers. Jerks.
In any case, I 3-putted my friend for a bogey 5 (no one said the ball you have become attached to will actually go in the hole in less shots!) and headed to my last hole of the day.
After somnething like 32 holes, I teed up a ball that I had strangely become quite emotionally attached to. My tee shot was again errant, this time slicing sharply to the left behind a tree jutting out into the fairway. I saw it bounce and I was elated. I was going to find it!
I drove up and found my ball laying in a deep bed of leaves and had only one shot – a safe play back to the fairway. Unfortunately, I thinned it and flew it over the fairway into a bunker. I tried to play a 7 iron out and thinned it again – my best friend ever landed back in the bunker, unwilling at this point to even leave my side.
A quick chip shot landed me in the fairway where I hit a beautiful 3 wood about 220 yards to the front of the green. I chipped it close and 2-putted for a triple bogey 8… but had managed to finish the round with this beautiful, mess of a ball that I might take home and put away forever.
Either that or I’ll tee it up and see how much magic is left!