On July 4th we all set off on tour, twelve men and true.
Arriving early, like all good seniors we found an unusually long queue at the ferry check in and of course at the head of it was Alan Ravenhall, without his car, head inside the booth trying to unbook himself from the 8:00 ferry to Cherbourg.
Well, we sorted that out and sailed away having sampled the culinary delights of the Red Funnel cafe ( why didn’t we have breakfast at the club?).
After another bacon roll and a very warm welcome at Freshwater bay we tee off in perfect conditions, playing for the first round of the Brian Wheelan Trophy. Their captain Bob Godden asked if we had brought the trophy for them to see, but I said there was no point – I think he understood – and our Captain of the Day set off:
As I recall, it didn’t go very far.
As dusk descended our last pair of Alan Ravenhall and Mike Pritchard came in to view and dinner was rescued from the microwave as we celebrated a win 3½ – 2½ and were hosted royally by our friends at Freshwater.
Our captain of the day, whilst not actually leading from the front entertained everybody with an excellent flying joke.
And so to bed, we thought. Not a bit of it, a rapid check in to our 5 star accommodation and off to the Wheatsheaf for our tour quiz. Intellect will out and the team of Lewsey, Waller and Rance took a commanding overnight lead of ½ a point.
We thought the entertainment was over but after a minor incident Tim Brunsden rushed after an assailant and made a citizen’s arrest, quite an achievement after 12 pints and two doner kebabs.
Bright eyed an bushey tailed we set off next day for Sandown & Shanklin where we started the day with our putting competition – the one where nobody knows the rules.
It all turned a bit ugly when Peter Darwin won after arriving late and missing the first knock out round but we let him win anyway.
A putting competition proved to be poor preparation for our match and coupled with poor leadership from our Captain of the day we suffered a 4½ – 1½ defeat. We never win here!
Back to the Wheatsheaf for round two of the quiz and the leaders prevailed – hooray! with no kebabs but of course Cliff did lose his wallet – or thought he had.
Final day at Osborne with a very nice team photo thanks to Alan Ravenhall – wait a minute, he’s in the photo! how did that happen?
This time we were on our metal and with military leadership from Barry we set off. Barry lost a ball off the first and for the rest of the round spent about 4 hours retrieving lost balls, determined to keep his ball count down. Barry and I let the side down but we came away with a 4½ – 1½ win on the day so mission accomplished. Once again the day ended with good friends, good beer and good food. Not bad for twelve quid.
We took to the ferry and whiled away the crossing giving prizes to everybody:
Tour Champ – Peter Darwin
Tour Chump – Tim Brunsden
Lots of other winners but I’m not going to name them all unless I got it wrong.
We drove off the ferry and in my excitement at returning home, the text I sent signed off with “IPSWITCH” instead of “NORWICH” so that caused a bit of confusion not to say disappointment.
Thank you all for being good boys and I hope you enjoyed the tour as much as we did and thank you for my pressie.
Captain and organiser, Chris and John.