Mike’s Mailbag: The Legend of the Mull River Shuffle

Hola Amigos,

I hope you all had an awesome Canada Day with your friends and family!

This Mailbag is coming at you straight from the Dilly Dally Cafe on the corner of Vernon and Quinpool in Halifax. I tee-off in 2.5 hours for my second round of the Nova Scotia Amateur and it’s suffice to say, round 1 results unfortunately did not meet my expectations. It was one of “those days” on the golf course and humbling to say the least. I was pretty bummed after the round, somewhat embarrassed to be frank, as the two guys I am playing with are players. Both on university on golf scholarships, one to Queen’s and the other to Waterloo.

It was tough to take in stride but sometimes when a fear of yours is realized, it’s actually refreshing if you look at it through the lens of a stoic philosopher (ie. there is no good or bad. Just the lens in which you interpret the event). It can actually be very freeing for a fear to be realized that your just not as good at something as you once were or think you are. That’s the case for tournament golf for me at the age of 27. I think I’m done with it.

It’s a case of perspective. If I shoot 79 in the tournament, I’m going to be disappointed with it and feel like I left shots out on the course. Yet, if I’m out on the links with my buddies and shooting any score under 80, I’m one happy camper and we’re having post round pints, no doubt. I want to be a glass half full kind of guy in life and tournament golf requires such precision and meticulous preparation, often at the expense of other important aspects of life. There is ZERO room for error and mental lapses in tournament golf. Breakfast balls and mulligans don’t exist. If you’re not fully committed 24/7 to honing your golf game, it can often be chalked up to luck if you play well in a tournament. Thus, it’s almost setting yourself up for failure.

I love the game of golf and I’ve realized that because I love the game so much, it’s time to move on from serious tournament golf. As they say, “golf is a good walk… spoiled”. I can’t wait for many spoiled walks in the future with good friends, family and colleagues!

After this humbling round of golf, I took a spur of the moment road trip to Wolfville to check out Acadia University’s campus and hot tamale, I was blown away with how beautiful the Annapolis Valley is! I went full tourist and just followed road signs which led me to Annapolis Cider Co. (amazing tasting cider that you can order by the case online), Luckett Vineyards (picked up a bottle of Black Cab – all of their wines can be ordered the case online), Just Us Coffee Roasters (learned how coffee is grown and roasted), the beautiful fields and vistas of Grand-Pre (a UNESCO World Heritage Site), and last but not least, Cape Split Provincial Park. I didn’t have time to do the 5-hour hike there but I will definitely be making the trek back there to do so with my buddy, Murdoch, in a few weeks. I’ve attached some pictures from my cruise below!

I capped off the night catching up with a few old university pals Carlisle, Dan, Warren, and Graham for pints sea-side on the boardwalk . It’s always fun catching up with pals down the road and learning about all the interesting things they’ve been up to. Our conversation was so dialed talking being in your 20’s, exploring, and trying to take the road less traveled. Dan and Carlisle are both very competitive sailers and that’s a sport I know nothing about so I loved hearing about their trials and tribulations on the open seas! Golf and sailing are timeless sports that bring the old and young together, so we had a good time exchanging insights.

I’m only going to share two articles with you this week and they are top shelf.

  • Every year on his birthday, Ryan Holiday writes a reflection on what he’s learned throughout the year and how he can turn that knowledge into wisdom to share with others. He just turned 30 and his new reflection is golden: http://thoughtcatalog.com/ryan-holiday/2017/06/how-to-live-a-full-life-and-leave-nothing-on-the-table-by-30/. My favorite bullet points are #15, #22, and #36… What are yours?
  • This is a pretty cool insight to the life of Josh Fechter, as written by Manu Goswami series #UNCONVENTIONAL. My favorite anecdote is “To anyone out there that feels like they have not found their passion, Josh wants you to see this story as a testament to the fact that you don’t have to rush to find you “passion”. Instead of focusing on building a lifestyle around work, build your work around a lifestyle you desire. Josh has had friends who have made tons of money but still feel lost when it comes to defining their purpose. For them, they have built a lifestyle around their work as opposed to flipping it and peering at every opportunity through the lens of their lifestyle.” Pretty cool message if you ask me -> https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/unconventional-josh-fechter-manu-goswami

Quote of the Week: “The roots of education are bitter, but the fruit is sweet.” – Aristotle

Song of the Week: There’s a group of ~12 caddies who are all pals and we do our best to take in the local Cape Breton culture. We’ve started a tradition of attending the Monday Night Square Dance in Skye Glen (about 15 minutes from Mabou). ~300 people of all ages come from around the county to join in the square dance festivities, on a Monday night of all days… Every week of the summer! It is an absolute hoot and the Rankin Family wrote a song called the “Mull River Shuffle” which is the river you drive along to get to the square dance. This probably isn’t the pump-up song you’d expect to listen to but when you get a crowd of Cape Bretoner’s stompin’ the dance floor to this jig, things really amp up!

Keep on Fighting the Good Fight,

Mike

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