Hello again, Carling here and I’ve officially played in 6 tournaments in 9 weeks, have driven 10+hours without stopping six times, made five cuts, accidentally hit one house, have had 17 birdies…one quadruple bogey…laughed, cried, screamed, and I can’t believe the season is already 1/3 of the way over!
I was thinking about it the other day…Playing golf has given me so many opportunities that most people will never get. It’s unbelievable how many people I have met through this crazy game! And believe it or not, the same 144 girls that are around from week to week actually get along! How many 23 year olds do you know that have good friends from Mexico, Sweden, France, South Korea, Japan, Russia, Canada, Spain, and almost every state that you can think of? I can pretty much say “good shot” in every language known to man. Bra Shot! (Swedish-that one’s for you, Annika).
Earlier this year I was playing a practice round with my buddy Anastasia Kostina. She’s the only professional golfer in the USA from Russia. Right next to her in the cart was Bing Lim, who is originally from Malaysia. However, she spent some time in Australia too so we always tease her for having the goofiest accent on tour. Finishing off the group was Caroline Larsson, a tall blonde from Sweden who hits the ball so far she makes me wonder what they put in the water over there.
Although we all get along, there are cliques. And I’m not saying this is necessarily a bad thing. We travel so much it would be so lonely if you didn’t find a group of people to be your “tour family”. Some common similarities that make up the tour cliques are common languages, college alum, married or single, and amount of years on tour. So these girls will share cars, find the nearest shop outlets, sit together at tour parties, coach each other on the range, and play a 5 dollar match on the putting green on Wednesday afternoon. It’s a beautiful thing!
When it comes time to tournament time…
socializing depends on who you’re playing with and what place you’re both in. I probably had the most fun this year when I played with my buddy Seema Sadekar. We both barely made the cut so were guaranteed a paycheck but needed like 20 birdies each to win the tournament. We were both convinced we were going to shoot a 59 that day. After I had a quad on the third hole and her a triple on the fourth…we both couldn’t stop laughing at our ridiculous attempt at the course record, and spent the rest of the day telling jokes and trying to can all of our shots from the fairway.
But there are times when we’re “all business”. Girls are always quiet at the beginning of each Friday round. That’s because we’ve spent 5 days practicing this course and we’re all convinced THIS is our week to finally win. If everyone has a caddy with them that day, conversation is usually saved for the other person who is on your team that day and we barely look at one another. If a girl is playing really well and suddenly hits a horrible shot-this is not a good time to chat about the awesome cheese pizza you had at the Olive Garden last night. Then of course-if you’re in the last couple groups on Sunday…KEEP IT SHUT! Most girls didn’t practice for 5 months in the offseason to miss their opportunity to win because you made them laugh so hard they forgot to add the wind. These are just the unwritten rules of golf.
I would definitely put myself in the category of ‘talkative’ on the golf course. In fact, sometimes I’ll think of something funny to say when my opponent is hitting her shot, and I’ll literally pray for her to hit a really good one so I can keep talking to her. There’s nothing like a bad shot to ruin the convo! It’s ridiculous , I know! But Lee Trevino was the same way. I’ve got hope. Haha
And of course…it’s not ALL daisies and hearts out there. There are feuds. I’ve had players get snippy in the scorer’s tent because i couldn’t remember if I had a three or a four. Oh…If you want to see some angry steam, then cut in front of a group when they’re making the turn on a 6 hour practice round. That always starts a war. I’ve also seen girls in the same clique call one another “chokers” behind their backs after bad rounds.
Although writing this blog sort of counteracts this statement…but… I am not a gossiper. I’m only a rookie. It’s way too early to have enemies! So I don’t have a clique. Not yet at least. I don’t fight with other players. I travel with my parents, and we spend way too much time making fun of each other to have time making fun of anyone else. I’m friends with all the cliques. I like it this way.
Okay, there ya go! That’s all the inside scoop on the professional ladies golf. We may each have our moments, but all in all we’re all out here for the same reason. To chase our dreams, win our first tournament, and finally make it to the top.
See-ya after the Iowa tournament!
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