After a roughly 18-month hiatus I finally got to hit the links again earlier this week. I joined my dad and father-in-law on a drive just north of Birmingham to play at the Mountain View Golf Course in Brookside.

The course itself was pretty nice and a good choice for some hackers like ourselves. It was rather hilly and quite soggy from rain the previous day. It wasn't overly long as some of the newer courses tend to be, but still a fun, challenging layout that was fairly well maintained given the low greens fees. It's definitely not as upscale as some of the nicer (and significantly more expensive) public courses closer to our area such as Ballantrae and Eagle Point. But I told my dad that if this was going to be my first outing in quite awhile, I'd like a cheaper and less crowded course to mess up on.

It turns out I really didn't need it as I did reasonably well given the circumstances. I've always stated that my realistic goal for myself should I ever get the chance to play golf semi-regularly (and by that I mean a couple times a month) is to be a bogey golfer. My best round ever was a 92 and I've had a lot of what I consider 'good' rounds in the mid-90s. So I figured if I broke 105 this time I'd be doing great. I surprised myself by starting off the day well on my way to my ideal round shooting just 10 over par on the front nine, including a birdie. Unfortunately some ugly putting on the back nine landed me a 51 on the backside for a grand total of 97, or 25 over par. But considering this was my first round in a long time and that I was playing fairly strict rules for someone of my limited skill (no mulligans or doctoring lies) I was actually quite pleased.

I didn't realize the best accomplishment of all though until we were walking off the 18th green. This was the first full round of 18-holes EVER where I started and finished the round with the same ball. I realize by saying that I'm possibly condemning myself to lose at least 8 balls on my next outing. But I don't care. That revelation alone was enough to make my day. Not to mention that it was nice to get out and spend the day with my dad and father-in-law. We'll get to do it again in the coming weeks as I got them both tickets to several of Alabama's biggest basketball games this season.


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