out with Cologne Tom and Oliver Horovitz

It was funny in that I had bumped into Cologne Tom in Greggs, as I had gone to fetch a tandoori chicken baguette for my lunch. He was having a small breakfast of tea, 2 bacon rolls and 2 iced buns. I got the customary handshake, huge grin and ever radiant Tom. Like me he hadn’t got a round booked and we wished each other a good day.
Of course I then couldn’t resist the temptation of a chocolate brownie and coffee in Taste. My phone went and it was Dave from the Caddie Shack asking if I could do a 13.52 on the New. I said yes and thought there may be some poetry in the man.
There was a huge group around the first tee and Tom was there, and in my group. But also Oliver Horovitz and a nice young Scottish caddie unremarkably called Scott. I thought that this could be an interesting round.
We had a lovely bunch from Nebraska and they were over to celebrate Rick’s sixtieth, who I was caddying for. He was a very tall and mellow attorney who said he hit it about 220 but rarely in a straight direction. This was confirmed off the first tee as he hit it 50 yards left over the gorse, and up the second fairway of The Old. Oliver said ‘I know you are eager to play it but we are on The New today’. We had a wee chuckle and he, rightly, intimated that it may have warranted a ‘fore’. Rick looked at me and I kind of said that it was quite a tough call but ‘legally yes!’
Tom was out with a big character chap called Phil and they got on famously from the start. On the fourth green Tom, as is his wont, pointed to a spot on the green as an indication of the line of the putt. Phil hit right over the spot and it missed by a reasonable margin. He looked at Tom who flung his arms up to the heavens, smiled gracefully, and declared beautifully and sincerely ‘I still love you’.
I knew it was going to be an interesting round.
Rick was great fun and after he holed his first long putt of the day on the fifteenth he gave me a high five and this six foot six, sixty year old Nebraskan attorney flung his hands high and danced round the entire green repeatedly shouting ‘a bogey!’ An amused couple walking on an adjacant fairway looked across smiling and I enthusiastically exclaimed ‘he just got a bogey’.
We all finished in great spirits and the round sped. Tom and I ambled back over the eighteenth fairway of The Old to the bus station, and caught sight of Oliver fifty yards ahead. Tom asked me his name again and then shouted ‘Oliver’ who waited for us. Then Tom comes out with ‘was that your first round caddying today?’ and quick as a flash Oliver says ‘yeh first round ever’. There was a pause and we laughed, but I am not sure who was the most perplexed of us all.

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