“A golf swing is a collection of corrected mistakes.”
I have been trying to improve my golf swing for years but to no avail. They say with practice our muscles remember the moves. I doubt it. Golf swings are moves that even the brain refuses to memorize, much less the muscles. Just like the twists of a blonde’s braids, the golf swing has its own strands. The world is constantly in motion – we can only ever try to savor each moment. Every strike is ever-blearing, slipping away until we hit another shot. It always feels like something is missing. It’s rarely perfect. Golf and mood swings don’t follow any pattern, nor do they care about the rules and regulations. Although one cannot play golf without some degree of self-discipline, no one can maintain their composure for long. Yet no one wants to perform badly either. It is in realizing our flaws that we get better, as once we are aware of them, we can try to do better. Just like a golf swing, we never perform the same in life, yet we learn to minimize risk and flaws, ever hopeful o one lucky strike.
“Somewhere out there is a swing that misses you. You are never too old for fun. Swing, dance, sing, laugh and act silly.”
Playing with strangers usually awakens most of the defects in our swing – specifically, when we are playing at a new course. We should learn to not compare ourselves too much, but we also need to be aware of our own actions. During the game, I usually drift away mentally from the scene. Because a lot keeps happening in my mind, all the time. A good oscillation in golf requires ultimate concentration. Playing routinely at the same course does help, but being a wanderer, I don’t like to dance in the same fairway again and again. Some of us require change as stimulation. Repetition can kill our enthusiasm, hence every swing needs to be new, yet better. But life is as much about compromises and stability as it is about seeking a new high. As a refugee by nature, I need to keep moving on. Learning to take different steps on different tunes, on different floors. The dancing dust reveals the traveler’s route. A wanderer’s journey mostly lacks a destination. Not all travelers need destinations, but all stations crave passengers. In the same vein, it is never where the ball falls that makes the game enjoyable, but our respective swings … that moment when the golfer and ball touch each other’s soul before blasting away into the distance.
Life itself is a small swing at the tree of time. One generation appears on the canvas of this universe like a moon in a lake and then disappears, like one wave leaving room for the next. The pendulum of life keeps going back and forth – the living ride one way and the dead the other. Perpetually in motion, like the golfer following the ball and the ball chasing the hole.
“Forget your opponents: always play against par.”
Sometimes a blink of a gorgeous eye cradles us on the swings of dreams and love. And sometimes one swing in trust breaks a beautiful heart. A swing in mother’s lap puts you to sleep and a swing of a dad’s hand can make you wiser and witty. Some swings earn the dough and some swings rattle the swords. Sometimes moods swing and sometimes destiny swings. Kids sit on swings for fun and swings sway to create a rhythm. It may be the swing of a monsoon or a yo-yo in the neighborhood park – they all put smiles on lovely faces. When one swing misses, another lands. It’s about realizing that we never miss; rather, we just change our trajectories and destinations.
“The gates made of light swing open. You see in.”
The golf swing is an exciting movement. It makes us bewildered, and it brings tears to our cheeks. It frustrates us, and yet it gives us pride – all in the same round. Just like those swings of our childhood days, we return from the course with dirty clothes, muddy shoes, flayed skin, sweaty faces, injured flexor tendon sheaths, hook of hamate pains and bruised toes, but with a great sense of fulfillment.
Golf itself is a journey that’s both physical and spiritual. Travelers love to keep on traveling. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a manicured fairway or a coarse trail.
When we leave the comfort of our homes, we may face the scorching sun, thundering storms, piercing thorns, sand dunes, rugged stones, and a whole lot more that would intimidate us into stopping. So what makes us carry on wandering? The wonders of scenery, texture of the planet, fragrance of the clay, whispers of the breeze, smiles of the trees, dirt of the paths, peaks of the mountains, valleys of the roaring rivers, the chat of the natural flowers, glimpses of amazing wild animals, swings of the passages, and love of the outdoors. We go through it all, again and again, because we want to experience life to its fullest. We put up with minor grievances for the satisfaction we gain in knowing that we lived it all; whether we won or not, we did it. Because it’s the footprints that we leave behind that make it all worth it. Others will follow our path and learn from us, and maybe we were never meant to reach the end, but to pave the way for another to continue living through us. When something ends, something else begins.
Keep swinging fellows.
Lahore Gymkhana Golf Course
Golfer, Blogger, Entrepreneur, Author, Poet, Wanderer, photographer, Rebel.
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