Updated  
January, 26 2014 19:14:25

Teed Off (Jan. 26, 2014)

with Robert Bicknell

You know you've been in Viet Nam too long when you start to consider the Tet as the "real" new year instead of the traditional Western date of January 1st. In fact, if you look at many countries, not just in Asia, they too follow the concept that the new year begins with Springtime.

In that light, I celebrate both, but with more emphasis on the Lunar New Year than the Western one. For one thing, it means gathering with family, whereas the Western New Year means drinking heavily and not remembering anything that happened. It also means hangovers, which are never fun. It seems better to celebrate rebirth (Spring) than self-induced alcohol poisoning.

To me, the best thing about Tet is that everything quiets down and I can collect my thoughts. It's a good time to assess the past year and reassess goals for the coming year. It's also a good time to play golf because most of the courses are a lot quieter.

I always try to get one round in before the end of the year, just to say goodbye and good riddance. I also try to get a round in at the beginning of the year in hopes everything will start and continue on a positive note.

Last weekend, I went up to Da Lat to play the new SACOM Tuyen Lam course. Having helped to build parts of it, I was anxious to see how it's turning out. They offered me a free hotel room in the clubhouse which was quite comfortable and high quality and much appreciated.

As there are only 9-holes open at this time, I played it twice on Friday and once on Saturday. To be honest, it's an interesting course, but held no excitement for me as I knew it intimately already from working with the shapers and superintendent on a daily basis for a year, but this was the first time I actually played it.

If you're not a great putter, you gonna suffer. Hmm, sounds like a cool slogan. I wonder if Augusta National already used it.

The trick to playing this course is knowing the yardages because the greens only allow you a straight putt if you land in the correct zone. Otherwise, you're gonna have a truly nasty breaking putt to contend with on any of the first six greens. The others are a bit more friendly, but not much. This is a putter's course.

I rebuilt the 3rd hole and, naturally think it's the best on the course, but I'm biased. The 5th hole, on the other hand is a long par 5 and, unless you can drive over 300 yards, don't bother trying to carry the second creek. So far, only Lars Holden and I have done it (my second nine drive on this hole was a wild-ass hook close to 362 yards…but in the wrong fairway. Still, it's fun to blast off at high altitude as you get more carry.

Saturday was more relaxed, but a lot colder as a nasty northern wind was barreling through the mountains. Still, quite enjoyable as I love cool weather and the solitude that only Da Lat can give you. It also forces you to play more wind-cheater shots and knockdowns.

The afternoon consisted of blasting up and down the mountains with some friends of the Dalat Motorcycle Club. It's been a year since I've been on a big bike and, having traded my VMAX for a Honda Shadow Sabre 750cc, it was also a new experience. The Shadow doesn't perform like a VMAX, but it's a lot more comfortable and, at my age, this is what I really want. Doing wheelies is for the younger generation. It's also quieter as the VMAX had headers and a 1200cc power plant, so the Cong An don't lose their minds when I roar past them. But, Da Lat police are nice guys actually.

Big thanks to Quy, Grant and Nigel for taking time to ride with me. Riding is always great, but riding with friends is even better. I just wish I could get up there more often to ride with fellow members of the club.

I wish you all great golf and happy, safe rides in the Year of the Horse!

Chuc Mung Nam Moi!

TEED OFF

with Robert Bicknell

You know you've been in Viet Nam too long when you start to consider the Tet as the "real" new year instead of the traditional Western date of January 1st. In fact, if you look at many countries, not just in Asia, they too follow the concept that the new year begins with Springtime.

In that light, I celebrate both, but with more emphasis on the Lunar New Year than the Western one. For one thing, it means gathering with family, whereas the Western New Year means drinking heavily and not remembering anything that happened. It also means hangovers, which are never fun. It seems better to celebrate rebirth (Spring) than self-induced alcohol poisoning.

To me, the best thing about Tet is that everything quiets down and I can collect my thoughts. It's a good time to assess the past year and reassess goals for the coming year. It's also a good time to play golf because most of the courses are a lot quieter.

I always try to get one round in before the end of the year, just to say goodbye and good riddance. I also try to get a round in at the beginning of the year in hopes everything will start and continue on a positive note.

Last weekend, I went up to Da Lat to play the new SACOM Tuyen Lam course. Having helped to build parts of it, I was anxious to see how it's turning out. They offered me a free hotel room in the clubhouse which was quite comfortable and high quality and much appreciated.

As there are only 9-holes open at this time, I played it twice on Friday and once on Saturday. To be honest, it's an interesting course, but held no excitement for me as I knew it intimately already from working with the shapers and superintendent on a daily basis for a year, but this was the first time I actually played it.

If you're not a great putter, you gonna suffer. Hmm, sounds like a cool slogan. I wonder if Augusta National already used it.

The trick to playing this course is knowing the yardages because the greens only allow you a straight putt if you land in the correct zone. Otherwise, you're gonna have a truly nasty breaking putt to contend with on any of the first six greens. The others are a bit more friendly, but not much. This is a putter's course.

I rebuilt the 3rd hole and, naturally think it's the best on the course, but I'm biased. The 5th hole, on the other hand is a long par 5 and, unless you can drive over 300 yards, don't bother trying to carry the second creek. So far, only Lars Holden and I have done it (my second nine drive on this hole was a wild-ass hook close to 362 yards…but in the wrong fairway. Still, it's fun to blast off at high altitude as you get more carry.

Saturday was more relaxed, but a lot colder as a nasty northern wind was barreling through the mountains. Still, quite enjoyable as I love cool weather and the solitude that only Da Lat can give you. It also forces you to play more wind-cheater shots and knockdowns.

The afternoon consisted of blasting up and down the mountains with some friends of the Dalat Motorcycle Club. It's been a year since I've been on a big bike and, having traded my VMAX for a Honda Shadow Sabre 750cc, it was also a new experience. The Shadow doesn't perform like a VMAX, but it's a lot more comfortable and, at my age, this is what I really want. Doing wheelies is for the younger generation. It's also quieter as the VMAX had headers and a 1200cc power plant, so the Cong An don't lose their minds when I roar past them. But, Da Lat police are nice guys actually.

Big thanks to Quy, Grant and Nigel for taking time to ride with me. Riding is always great, but riding with friends is even better. I just wish I could get up there more often to ride with fellow members of the club.

I wish you all great golf and happy, safe rides in the Year of the Horse!

Chuc Mung Nam Moi!

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Updated  
January, 26 2014 19:14:25

Teed Off (Jan. 26, 2014)

with Robert Bicknell

You know you've been in Viet Nam too long when you start to consider the Tet as the "real" new year instead of the traditional Western date of January 1st. In fact, if you look at many countries, not just in Asia, they too follow the concept that the new year begins with Springtime.

In that light, I celebrate both, but with more emphasis on the Lunar New Year than the Western one. For one thing, it means gathering with family, whereas the Western New Year means drinking heavily and not remembering anything that happened. It also means hangovers, which are never fun. It seems better to celebrate rebirth (Spring) than self-induced alcohol poisoning.

To me, the best thing about Tet is that everything quiets down and I can collect my thoughts. It's a good time to assess the past year and reassess goals for the coming year. It's also a good time to play golf because most of the courses are a lot quieter.

I always try to get one round in before the end of the year, just to say goodbye and good riddance. I also try to get a round in at the beginning of the year in hopes everything will start and continue on a positive note.

Last weekend, I went up to Da Lat to play the new SACOM Tuyen Lam course. Having helped to build parts of it, I was anxious to see how it's turning out. They offered me a free hotel room in the clubhouse which was quite comfortable and high quality and much appreciated.

As there are only 9-holes open at this time, I played it twice on Friday and once on Saturday. To be honest, it's an interesting course, but held no excitement for me as I knew it intimately already from working with the shapers and superintendent on a daily basis for a year, but this was the first time I actually played it.

If you're not a great putter, you gonna suffer. Hmm, sounds like a cool slogan. I wonder if Augusta National already used it.

The trick to playing this course is knowing the yardages because the greens only allow you a straight putt if you land in the correct zone. Otherwise, you're gonna have a truly nasty breaking putt to contend with on any of the first six greens. The others are a bit more friendly, but not much. This is a putter's course.

I rebuilt the 3rd hole and, naturally think it's the best on the course, but I'm biased. The 5th hole, on the other hand is a long par 5 and, unless you can drive over 300 yards, don't bother trying to carry the second creek. So far, only Lars Holden and I have done it (my second nine drive on this hole was a wild-ass hook close to 362 yards…but in the wrong fairway. Still, it's fun to blast off at high altitude as you get more carry.

Saturday was more relaxed, but a lot colder as a nasty northern wind was barreling through the mountains. Still, quite enjoyable as I love cool weather and the solitude that only Da Lat can give you. It also forces you to play more wind-cheater shots and knockdowns.

The afternoon consisted of blasting up and down the mountains with some friends of the Dalat Motorcycle Club. It's been a year since I've been on a big bike and, having traded my VMAX for a Honda Shadow Sabre 750cc, it was also a new experience. The Shadow doesn't perform like a VMAX, but it's a lot more comfortable and, at my age, this is what I really want. Doing wheelies is for the younger generation. It's also quieter as the VMAX had headers and a 1200cc power plant, so the Cong An don't lose their minds when I roar past them. But, Da Lat police are nice guys actually.

Big thanks to Quy, Grant and Nigel for taking time to ride with me. Riding is always great, but riding with friends is even better. I just wish I could get up there more often to ride with fellow members of the club.

I wish you all great golf and happy, safe rides in the Year of the Horse!

Chuc Mung Nam Moi!

TEED OFF

with Robert Bicknell

You know you've been in Viet Nam too long when you start to consider the Tet as the "real" new year instead of the traditional Western date of January 1st. In fact, if you look at many countries, not just in Asia, they too follow the concept that the new year begins with Springtime.

In that light, I celebrate both, but with more emphasis on the Lunar New Year than the Western one. For one thing, it means gathering with family, whereas the Western New Year means drinking heavily and not remembering anything that happened. It also means hangovers, which are never fun. It seems better to celebrate rebirth (Spring) than self-induced alcohol poisoning.

To me, the best thing about Tet is that everything quiets down and I can collect my thoughts. It's a good time to assess the past year and reassess goals for the coming year. It's also a good time to play golf because most of the courses are a lot quieter.

I always try to get one round in before the end of the year, just to say goodbye and good riddance. I also try to get a round in at the beginning of the year in hopes everything will start and continue on a positive note.

Last weekend, I went up to Da Lat to play the new SACOM Tuyen Lam course. Having helped to build parts of it, I was anxious to see how it's turning out. They offered me a free hotel room in the clubhouse which was quite comfortable and high quality and much appreciated.

As there are only 9-holes open at this time, I played it twice on Friday and once on Saturday. To be honest, it's an interesting course, but held no excitement for me as I knew it intimately already from working with the shapers and superintendent on a daily basis for a year, but this was the first time I actually played it.

If you're not a great putter, you gonna suffer. Hmm, sounds like a cool slogan. I wonder if Augusta National already used it.

The trick to playing this course is knowing the yardages because the greens only allow you a straight putt if you land in the correct zone. Otherwise, you're gonna have a truly nasty breaking putt to contend with on any of the first six greens. The others are a bit more friendly, but not much. This is a putter's course.

I rebuilt the 3rd hole and, naturally think it's the best on the course, but I'm biased. The 5th hole, on the other hand is a long par 5 and, unless you can drive over 300 yards, don't bother trying to carry the second creek. So far, only Lars Holden and I have done it (my second nine drive on this hole was a wild-ass hook close to 362 yards…but in the wrong fairway. Still, it's fun to blast off at high altitude as you get more carry.

Saturday was more relaxed, but a lot colder as a nasty northern wind was barreling through the mountains. Still, quite enjoyable as I love cool weather and the solitude that only Da Lat can give you. It also forces you to play more wind-cheater shots and knockdowns.

The afternoon consisted of blasting up and down the mountains with some friends of the Dalat Motorcycle Club. It's been a year since I've been on a big bike and, having traded my VMAX for a Honda Shadow Sabre 750cc, it was also a new experience. The Shadow doesn't perform like a VMAX, but it's a lot more comfortable and, at my age, this is what I really want. Doing wheelies is for the younger generation. It's also quieter as the VMAX had headers and a 1200cc power plant, so the Cong An don't lose their minds when I roar past them. But, Da Lat police are nice guys actually.

Big thanks to Quy, Grant and Nigel for taking time to ride with me. Riding is always great, but riding with friends is even better. I just wish I could get up there more often to ride with fellow members of the club.

I wish you all great golf and happy, safe rides in the Year of the Horse!

Chuc Mung Nam Moi!

Send Us Your Comments:
Name:
Your E-mail address:
Title:
 

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