Starting out: The Bahamas Exuma Classic
|Week 1: Mic’d Up at Exuma|
|To TeamMaverick & TeamCurriki|
I wanted to write to thank you all for an amazing first week of Birdies for Education. We have raised $20,462 only four days from launch! We also had a whopping 58 pledges this week.
The support has been unbelievable! We are currently in the ballpark of $1,275 pledged per birdie – if we can get this to $2,500+ per birdie, we’ll meet our goal of raising $1M for education as I work toward making my 500th birdie this season!
I finished in a tie for 65th place after a disappointing weekend, but still managed to make fourteen birdies and an eagle. I was the first player to ever be mic’d up on Golf Channel for an entire round on the first day, where I shot a bogey-free 69.
Round two was not quite as clean, but I managed to make three birdies and an eagle on my second 9 to offset two bogies and a double to stay in a tie for 14th place going into the “weekend” (we had an unusual Sunday start to the tournament).
A REALLY TIGHT COURSE!
The weekend was a bit of a challenge… I made two double bogies and a quadruple bogey in the third round. This golf course was really tight with hazard and out-of-bounds lining both sides of the fairway, and holes 4 and 16 had my number this week. I played hole 4 at 4-over par and hole 16 at 5-over par. Both holes have water left and out-of-bounds to the right, and unfortunately I missed the fairway a few too many times.
That being said, my good was pretty good, and I put together four really solid rounds with the putter. I also birdied 17 and 18 in both weekend rounds (after making a mess of 16), and I’d be lying if I didn’t say making some more birdies for Curriki helped pull me through. I’m excited to get my best club, the driver, back in the bag and in my hands a few more times next week and try to take it deep!
INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT EXUMA
A few interesting facts about Exuma- there is one main paved road that runs north/south along the island, and about 7,000 residents. The drives to and from the golf course were interesting, dodging potholes, hitchhikers and oncoming traffic, all while being on the left side of an unmarked road. I’m glad Travis, my caddy, was driving.
After the final round on Wednesday, I took some time to go snorkeling at the beach right off the 11th green, where I found more fish and clearer water than even the Great Barrier Reef in Australia… and a TaylorMade 5! It did make me feel better to know that I wasn’t the only one that donated a ball or two to the fish.
Throughout the year I will also try to describe some local cuisine that I encounter… and while I didn’t have the heart to try grilled Conch or conch chowder, my favorite new food was the grilled plantains (similar to bananas). A typical Bahamian meal would be jerk chicken (something like Cajun bbq chicken), rice and peas (I don’t know where the peas come from, it looked and tasted like rice and beans), and plantains. Big D’s conch spot is the place to go if you’re ever in town.
As I write this I am on the Web.com chartered BahamasAir flight to the Island of Abaco for our next event. The general consensus is that this event is the nicer of the two Bahamas events and the golf course is fantastic.
It means the world to me that you all are making a difference with Curriki, but also following me this year.This is truly a fun and personally inspiring way to raise money for a great cause and give you all a week-by-week look into my year.
As always, please send this on to as many people as you can – the more we can get involved, the bigger difference we can make. Thanks again for your interest and generosity, and let’s make some more birdies next week!!
PS I will also be giving you some updates on the progress we are making with Curriki as the season progresses.