I am excited to be up here this week after many weeks thinking I was going to get a start only to miss out by less than a handful of people for 4 tournaments in a row. That has been frustrating but it was nice to be home and play some Sunshine tour events and put some time into my game, not to mention my family. I was fortunate enough to celebrate ten years of marriage to my beautiful wife Rachel and also got to enjoy the “Dads Night” at Jonte’s prep and also Celebration Night for Jack and his grade 1-3 buddies!! I missed them both last year so it was a nice treat to be able to go to both of those this year, not to mention being home for Fathers Day!! I also got to see off a mission team from my church that was heading to Africa for some amazing work over there, investing in the lives of people who have nothing. Two of my best buddy's were going so it was nice to see them off from the airport as they no doubt go on a life changing trip.
Japan never ceases to amaze me, on the train on Monday at 9pm, it was packed with school kids, and I am talking about primary school there as well. I couldn’t begin to imagine Jack or Jonte in a few years getting on a train at 9 o’clock to head home from school on their own. Quite incredible. At least they know where they are going!!
This is the first event for me in a fairly solid period of golf. I am playing here, then heading back for the Brisbane week of the Sunshine Tour where I get to defend a couple of Pro Am wins from last year, Indro and Royal Qld. I would certainly love to defend both, particularly RQ as it is the richest one day pro am on the calendar in Australia this year, playing for $60000. After that week I am planning to head back up here to Japan for a Challenge Tour event over 2 days and then back to Brisbane for some more pro ams in early October before heading away for 3 weeks on the Australian Tour. I have 2 events in WA and then the NSW PGA in Wollongong. I am looking forward to getting stuck into it, starting this week!!
The course this week is the Toshin Lake Wood Golf Club and as usual it is long, tight, has thick rough, hard undulating and fast greens and as an added bonus this week it is hilly!! Just the norm for the Japanese Tour. I am however looking forward to the week and feel like the time is right for me to be here. In reading some of the stories coming out of the African trip already it is easy to realise that nothing that happens to me on this tour is bad. I could have the worst day and play terrible, have 85 and miss the cut but it all pails into insignificance when you hear about a million people living in a rubbish tip in Africa with nothing. One thing they have in abundance is hope. We have to live in hope and remember that every day we are alive we have a choice. I tell my kids regularly that each day they have a choice to be awesome and a choice to be helpful to others, to make a difference. We all have that choice, each one of us has a story, our own story that is being written by us right now. What is your story looking like, if you don't like it, then change it, you are the only one who can do that. I put my hope in God, that is the best place for it I reckon.
I will give you some more info on the course tomorrow and update how I went in round one. I will be having a great day regardless and making a difference in somebody's life tomorrow. Invest in those around you. Make sure you check out the photos and take note of the par 3 length on the tee sign. The photo after it is the actual hole, it's a monster!! Remember when you get out of bed and at many times in your day you have a choice!!