Tuesday, April 29, 2008

The SJO at Pinehurst

For the last two years I have hooked up with a group of guys to play in the SJO (Slim Jim open) golf tournament at Pinehurst. They have been putting this trip together for about 20 years now. My invite came from Mark Reid (one of our neighbors) who has been going for 6-8 years.

We played a round on Friday at Tobacco Road in Carthage. This is without a doubt the most bizarre course I have ever played. One golf magazine ranked it as the 10th hardest in the US. Lots of the shots were blind, onto fairways or greens you couldn't see because of huge elevation changes and giant hills/cliffs. Wish I had some pictures.

This picture is the #1 tee box at Little River. We played two rounds there on Saturday. Very long course, but quite civil.

This was our foursome for both rounds Saturday. Front left to right, me, Bob Anderson, Mark Kangas, and Mark Reid. I hope we were standing on a hill because if not, either Mark Reid is about 6'6" or I am about 5'6".

We stayed at Little River in nice two bedroom condos. They each have a decent little kitchen and living room.

The doors to the five condos we had were open most of the time and people just wander up and down the hall being social. Sitting over in the corner is Joe Kimosh, the organizer of the SJO.

This is almost everyone getting ready for our last round. We played Sunday at Talamore in Pinehurst. I think this was the easiest course, but you couldn't tell from my score.

One of the ones missing in the group photo was Jody. After drinking a wee bit the night before, he found a nice comfortable place to get some shut eye.

And finally, at the end. In the Talamore parking lot they calculated scores and figured out the winners. The big smile on the guy with the blue shirt (Don) is because he won on Friday, Saturday, and the total. He tried very hard on Sunday to blow a 16 shot lead but managed to hang on and win by two.

But the real winner and SJO Champion was Mark Reid. Here he is donning the red velvet coat and then getting his 3 foot tall trophy. You win this honor by having the worst scores for the weekend. Both the coat and trophy are appropriately ugly.

The real luck in the weekend was the weather. Friday was gorgeous and around 80. Saturday was nice until the end. We finished our 36th hole and within 15 minutes it started pouring. It probably dumped 2+ inches of rain. On Sunday we had finished golfing and were awarding Mark the last of the awards when the skies opened again. The only person who might not agree was Todd, who left the sun roof to his car open during Saturday's downpour. Oops.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Raleigh vs Park City

Raleigh: Sunny. Low 80s. Golfing.

Park City: Damn. Snowing again. The snow is still going to be there when we go back in June.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Visiting with the Huntley kids

Had lunch the other day with Tim Huntley, one of the co-founders of Ganymede Software. Having not seen him for a while, I ask the normal "what's new?" He answers that two of his goats are pregnant. Not something that normally comes up in my conversations.

So, yesterday we took a trip to the Huntley house/farm to see Tim, Jenny, Neil, Evan, and the goats. Tim appears to be a pied piper of goats. They know they are headed towards the barn, and food.

One of the baby goats playing in the barn. He (or she) is only about two weeks old. I feel for the mom goats. The babies are born quite large compared to other animals. Think about a two week old puppy. Most are like a large fist of fur that just wallows around.

Getting some milk from mom.

Things I learned about goats, some of which is common sense:
  • Goats are great lawn mowers. Put them in an area you want cleared and they will eat the brush, grass, briers, ....
  • If you want your goat to make milk, you have to have it get pregnant every year.
  • People want female goats, not males. Male goats are ornery and don't make milk.
  • Male goats actually pee on their own heads to make themselves more attractive to the females. See the point above about not wanting males.
  • If all you have is females, but you want milk, you have to send you goats on vacation at what seems to be a male goat prostitution farm. I am not sure that as a farmer, I would want to be a goat pimp.
... and finally, a picture of Jenny with Neil. Notice the cool shades he's wearing.

Sorry Evan, no picture on this trip.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Back in Raleigh

We get back to the nice sunny weather in Raleigh. We can open the windows and enjoy the fresh air. NOT! The pine pollen season came a bit late this year. If you open the windows, your house will be coated with a layer of green/yellow dust. Here is a view of the picnic table on the deck.

The flowers were loving the rain from March and early April. I nearly killed this Carolina Jasmine when I tore out the old deck and built the new one. Seems to be recovering quickly though.

These prettt purple flowers grow out back under the oak and maple trees.

Dogwoods are in bloom everywhere and so is this similar looking bush. It is a relative of the Japanese Snowball, but I never could figure out which for sure.

Once the pine pollen died down a bit, I decided it was safe to put the cushions out on the chairs in the screen porch. Before I could finish hauling them all out, the little queen had claimed a new comfy throne.

Off to go golfing with Darrell Baber, Jason Shive and Mark Pozefsky. It is supposed to be in the low 80s today. Wow! Wish I could golf in the low 80s. I golf more like Phoenix in August.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

End of the season

We got our last skiing in yesterday over at Deer Valley. The snow was decent for February and fantastic for April 5th. We have hung up all the skis and snow shoes for what turned out to be a great winter. Park City reported just shy of 400" of snow and Alta reported over 600".

And of course, what is it doing as we pack for Raleigh? Snowing.

Even with the melting, we still have a few feet on the north side of the roof.

An excellent winter. Now we are Raleigh bound!

Friday, April 04, 2008

More birding

I got up early this morning and hooked up with our builder, Rob Schumacher. We were heading back to the grouse lek so I could try for some better shots. Unfortunately, the grouse wandered off before the sun really came up, and the pictures were pretty mediocre. Nice grouse show though.

On the way home, we ran across the Great Blue Heron rookery I had heard about. I knew it was near a particular river, so I figured it would be a bunch of low nests, hard to find. Oh well, so much for my birding knowledge. Seems they are all up in big nests at the tops of trees. This was shot from a long way away, but we could tell they were busy building up the nests. It will be interesting to go back in June and see what has happened.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Spring yet?

You hear about March coming in like a lion and going out like a lamb. Not quite so here in Park City.

This morning it was a balmy 8 degrees. There is not a fl0wer in sight. There is actually very little ground in sight. We've had about a foot of snow over the past 3-4 days. It's snowing again now, although lightly.

Time to head back to NC.