“Love Golf” Hiroshima – After an Interval of 15 Years…

Title: Love Golf
Location: Aita, Hiroshima
Description: David, Jaime, Simon, Rikki meet in town to catch the Asu Tram to Kamiyasu to play golf at Love Golf…
Start Time: 10:30
Date: 2010-10-30


I made a return trip to Love Golf yesterday for the first time since the mid 90’s when Merin and I used to drink our way around the course in our bachelor heyday. I was in the company of Jaime, Kiwi Simon and Rikki. We were ignoring rumours of an approaching typhoon, and rightly so because the weather turned out to be excellent in spite of appearances in the first photo below.

The course is exactly as was back in the ’90s. Only the reception area – you can’t really call it a club house – seems to have been renovated.

David, Rikki and Simon

My golf has “improved” somewhat since the mid-nineties when I had no experience, no lessons, no practice and no inclination to learn. Nevertheless, by the fifth hole I had lost eight balls – two had disappeared into the trees, and I left a pack of six balls on the course somewhere.

You can still hire the same old golf clubs as were available 15 years ago, and the course, a pitch and put affair on the top of a hillside in the northwestern suburbs of Hiroshima, is as forgiving as ever, except for the dreaded second hole, of course. I got pretty close to landing my ball on the green on that hole second time around but my number 7 wasn’t up to it and the ball faded and fell short…

Faded and fell short. How apt a summary of one’s life that seems sometimes. At Love Golf, however, you can always hope to do better next time round!

Hole 10: The ball is about to go over the net...

My second nine started off disastrously when I, completely out of position, sliced the ball with my pitching wedge straight over the netting on my right. The photo explains everything!

Still, the second nine was an improvement on my first, the scores being, 49 for the first and 42 for the second time round, complete with a birdie on the 15th, although I should point out that Jaime had removed the flag pole and so put his golf club in the hole as a substitute and my medium length putt sent the ball straight to the club and into the hole…

The boys did a stirling job of finding balls in the undergrowth to replenish our stock.

The competition was between the other three players, Jaime, Rikki and Simon, with David bumbling along behind. Rikki’s strength was in the short approach, chipping balls onto the green and close to the hole. Simon did well on the green most of the time, and Jaime put in a good all round performance.

Jaime and David brought along their own clubs (well, David’s clubs are actually Jaime’s old set, and a bit short, which of course explains David’s difficulties…).

The beauty of Love golf is the way you can totally screw up a shot only to see the path, the bank and the slope conspire to guide the ball back onto the “fairway”. Simon provided us a fine example of this half way through the second nine.

The scores were:

Jaime 65
Rikki 72
Simon 74
David 91

We celebrated with beer, ramen and curry in the little Mama-san cafe after the game. Love Golf looks as if it could become a regular event…


David chips his ball onto the 18th...