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If someone came back from the golf course and told you that they had “chunked an approach that left them having to take a Mulligan, and then ended up on the apron, before lipping out and relying on a come-backer to save par”, you would be entirely within your rights to assume that they had spent too long at the 19th Hole. But the actual fact is that they would be describing something that happens every so often to most golfers. They would be couching it in dense terminology and making it almost impossible to understand for anyone but other golfers, but they would not be lying or, necessarily, drunk.
To “chunk” a shot is to drive your club into the ground before, or in (accidental) lieu of hitting the ball. Coming from the sound that such an impact makes, it is something horribly familiar to a great many golfers. And it could lead to a Mulligan, which is a replay of the shot without any stroke being counted. This is not allowed in competition golf, but is allowed to pass in most casual rounds. From your Mulligan, could you end up on an apron? You certainly could. Assuming you were aiming for the green, if you ended up on the slightly rougher patch of grass around it, that’s exactly where you would have ended up.
From such a position there would be two options. Firstly your sober friend could try to chip the ball from the “apron” towards the hole, or secondly they could attempt a putt. If the ball rolled around the outside of the hole and stayed out, this is described as “lipping out” – from where the ball can go anywhere, sometimes heart breakingly a few feet past. When the ball rolls past the hole, you must rely on a putt coming back the other way – or, as the terminology has it, a “comebacker”.
There are a great many other golf terms which may be considered impenetrable and arcane to the uninitiated. The best advice that one could possibly pass on to a novice trying to get a handle on the terminology for the sake of a relationship is to watch with a notepad and learn as you go along with some help from the Internet.
Why Put Things Off When You Can Go Off Putting?
For many of us, a holiday is an opportunity to get away from things and sit by a pool, catching some sun and having a quiet period of relaxation and contemplation. Some of us do not deal so well with staying still all the time and need to have a bit more to do with our time. These are the people who benefit most from golfing holidays. You still get the time away from things – perhaps more so, because there are few places more suited to splendid isolation than the far end of a golf course – but you also get to have a bit of gentle exercise rather than getting bored on a sun lounger.
There are some great destinations for a golfing holiday in the US. Florida in itself is home to several fabulous courses, with very limited prospects of having to cut short your game due to rain if you go at the right time. Check with your travel agent to see where and when you could go and play a few rounds, and especially ask them about Naples – the famed golfer’s paradise – and the world renowned Doral golfing resort. Arizona, too, is home to some great courses, and both of the above states have a lot more going for them than just (!) golf, so the whole family can come along.
If you fancy stretching your search a bit further than US courses, there are some excellent golfing holidays to be had further afield. In Europe, there is a love for golf that challenges that of the American golfing fraternity. Britain, for example, is home to some of the most famous old courses in the world, including the Belfry (four time host of the Ryder Cup) and St Andrews, while Ireland has the legendary K Club. Meanwhile, if you want to get a bit more sunshine while you play, the Portuguese Algarve is dotted with excellent courses. Further afield again, you might consider Dubai for a golfing break. There are courses springing up all the time there, while the hotels simply have to be seen to be believed.