Ireland, Golf and the Lady I Love

Tom Velarde
Golf Professional
Black Mesa Golf Club
La Mesilla, AZ

More Information

Recently, my bride gave me a surprise! We are going to Ireland this year and we’re going to play golf! After all these years of marriage, husbands learn to not show a lot of emotion. This most likely is why they make good poker players. I did drop the glass of tea I had just poured and did manage to kick it on the way down, dousing the angel who had just granted me a wish.

She giggled as I tried to act cool and mopped the floor and casually asked…Ireland? The words flowed off my now parched lips like water to a thirsty man. I could even hear the Irish borough playing in my head for the chance to head to the golf holy land. Garth Brooks was playing “Ireland I’m coming home” on the radio…this was destined to be!

Yes, Ireland…she dead-panned carefully, watching me now to make sure I was not going to have a heart attack. “We need to go now, while we’re still young enough to enjoy it and play those courses,” she stated. “Grant and Peggy want to go so that makes a foursome.” I did not bother to correct it to four ball, as this was too good to be true.

“You pick the courses you want to play and give them to this travel agent,” and she handed me a piece of paper with a name and phone number. My hands were now feeling just like they do over a five footer sliding away from me on a green so fast the ball marker needs that little pin to stick in the green to hold it in place. I walk to the chair that serves as my office, television-watching place and phone call station and dialed.

A man with a gosh darn Irish accent answered and said, “What can eye do foooor youuuuu?” I identified myself and said my wife had called about a golf trip to Ireland. “Oh yeeeees moooon i canna holp ye tell me which coursessesss ye wountt taa play?”

Heaven grants so many wishes to all of us. Many times we cannot begin to fathom how these wishes come true. My bride has given me three beautiful girls who in turn gave me three son-in-law’s, and a father’s dream. Now, they all will have children that we will enjoy for many years.

But…this summer will be me and my bride, hard against the Irish coast, squinting into the fading light on the 18th at Ballybunion…that my friends is what love is all about.  

Irish whiskey, the lady I love and playing the game we both love… only in America.

Tom Velarde is the Director of Golf at Black Mesa Golf Club in Espanola, New Mexico, just northwest of Santa Fe. For more information or to reach Tom, email