Women take links golf trips to Wales & the British Isles too...at least in Sweden
HARLECH, WALES – I paid a visit to Royal St. David’s in North Wales this afternoon, a lovely 19th century links where the ancient Harlech Castle ruins loom over you at every turn. It was a sight I’d never seen before, playing so closely beneath a ruin straight overhead. The castle is so close in fact, a former Welsh Open champ, Captain Carter in 1922, succeeded in hitting a ball from the course up into the castle and won a 100-1 pound bet - which isn’t exactly chump change given the era he achieved this feat. Personally, I wouldn’t mind taking a few cracks at the castle myself from the course, though in the spirit of professionalism I’ll leave it to the tourist player to sneak out after dark and take some cracks at it (I’m thinking a 21-degree utility might do the trick…)
That wasn’t the only links first for me. There were others, including a black house cat that laid in the middle of the par-3 9th green. His name is “Pepsi” apparently, and at his home there is another bully cat that won’t let the poor pussy come around anymore. So he hangs out on the course and hopes to be fed by golfers - or at least get his tummy scratched - his days will be numbered though so long as he decides to lounge in the center of a green.
But I digress…I also saw a group of women out on the links a few groups ahead of us, there must have been at least eight of them. It turns out they were from Sweden and were playing St. David’s twice and nearby Nefyn & District as well, which I’ll see tomorrow. I’ve never seen a tourist women’s group, sans husbands, on a links vacation of their own. At the risk of sounding sexist, you’d think most women’s groups would prefer Bermuda or Costa del Sol or somewhere they are guaranteed a tan or at least five-star spa treatments or clubs blaring Ricky Martin.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve seen plenty of local women on all the courses in Southwest England and Wales this trip. At Saunton, there was a match between the women of Saunton and another nearby club - all decked out in their club’s uniforms. They played match play and I think they seemed to be taking it mighty seriously. I was walking around the course taking some photos while they were out there, and I didn’t see much banter between these opponents. They weren’t even walking off the tee together actually. Catty gals…
Couples make for a large percentage of links golf foursomes. In fact, there was a mixed foursome of Americans ahead of us from Nashville and Atlanta, which again is never seen a fellow American on a golf course in Wales, it’s nice to see the word of deeply discounted golf and charming links have gotten out. But a women’s group without husbands, touring links golf courses in North Wales? Now that is something I didn’t expect - yet am quite encouraged to see.
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2. "At the risk..."? No risk at all; you ARE sexist. Sexist, however, is not always a bad thing. The age of absolutes ought to be over by now.