My husband and I were golfing with some friends of ours who are staunch Baptists. They are great people and we love to play golf with them. But I have to tell you about an afternoon of golf on the Royal New Kent Golf Club in Providence Forge, VA.
First you need to know a little bit about this golf course. This course was designed by Mike Strantz, and is the only Irish Links style golf course in the United States. The golf course’s motto is “Invicta” which means “unconquered” and is the same motto of the County of Kent, England. You have to play the course to truly appreciate how well Mike Strantz designed this course in an Irish Links style.
Royal New Kent is 7,440 yards, rugged, and from the green to the next tee box can take a couple of minutes to get to. You are not walking this course. If you play from the tips (“Invicta” Tees) it can be one of the most difficult courses in the country. The course strongly recommends that you play from the appropriate tee boxes. Meaning, you should play the tee box that best suits your ability. This recommendation helps the speed of play and makes the course more enjoyable. If you lose a ball in the tall windswept grass there is no need to waste time looking for it because you just won’t find it. This course has 105 bunkers that are large and can be deep. The greens may be hidden by rock walls, deep grass or mounds.
Now that you know a little about the course, just imagine weekend golfers playing this course for the first time. The wives were in one cart and the husbands in the other. We played several holes and all seemed to go pretty well. But by the 7th hole, my cart buddy was not playing well. Shot after shot just went from bad to worse. She was in fairway bunkers and then long grass and couldn’t find her ball. She must have lost 4 or 5 balls within a few holes. To make matters worse, her husband was trying to show her what she was doing wrong and that just made her play even worse and then made her mad.
Remember that I said that this couple are staunch Baptists. But you would never know that after the 7th hole. The expletives were just flying out of our cart. I don’t think I have ever heard these words come from her before. After several holes of tantrums and expletives, I finally said to her that I have never heard her say words like this before and that I was surprised since she was such a devout Baptist. I will never forget what she said to me that day. “Robin, there is no religion on the golf course”. And then she started laughing.
We laughed so hard that we both almost fell out of the golf cart. You won’t believe this, but she started playing much better after that and we enjoyed the rest of the round. I guess the moral of this story is that don’t let one bad shot lead to another and another. Let the bad shot go, move forward and move on. Laugh at yourself when you start taking the game too seriously. And remember there is no religion on the golf course!