Yesterday was the first practice round. Not much happening, a few workers buzzing around setting the place up, but overall pretty quite. We hit balls for a bit then head to the first tee on our own. A group tees off and as we wait up comes an Aussie and he asks to join. "Yeah of course, no problem". We get to playing and Sam being Sam he starts opening up and we come to find out this is Stephen Leaney. Long time tour vet. Played pretty much everywhere. By the end of the round he's dished out a great supply of info and advice. It's pretty much exactly what you'd imagine when you mix an absolute rookie with a vet open and willing to share his knowledge. We couldn't have asked for a better situation to day 1.
Oh, forgot to mention, Bio Kim bought us lunch yesterday. That's part of "Sam being Sam". He's one of those guys that can make friends with anyone. Granted the Korean golfer world is a pretty small one. Particularly if you're from SoCal. If you haven't played with this guy, that other guy has and eventually you will too. Then you find yourself in that circle and Sam seems to be one of the more memorable in the circle.
Today was the pro-am, which he's not playing in, so we got to the course for a practice day. And today I really started to feel it. Scoreboards are up. Course is wired for cameras and towers are up. The ropes are up. And by now all the golfers are either out playing or practicing. The range is filled with tech guys from the different companies, as well as coaches and entourages. Being inside the ropes is starting to feel kinda special. It got a little extra special when YE Yang showed up. He just plopped himself right in the middle of the jam packed range and started in with practice.
Tomorrow is practice round day 2. Sam and I are getting there early to beat the crowds and the heat. The plans is to have Bio meet us on the back.
Round 1 has us teeing off at the typical rookie 12:15 off the back tee time