Saturday, September 20, 2008

Irishmen Take Break from Golf to Visit Seagrove

Paddy Gavin snaps a picture of Larry Hogan
at From the Ground Up. Hogan is holding a hurley.

Sixteeen golfers from County Westmeath, Ireland took time from their golfing in Pinehurst to visit a few potters in Seagrove today. They stopped at From the Ground Up and one of the first things someone spotted was a hurley, sporting equipment that is to an Irishman like a baseball bat is to an American. Hurling is a popular sport native to Ireland where the ball is hit with the hurley in order to score either through the goal posts or past the goal keeper and into the net. My wife's four brothers all played hurling when they were younger. Her oldest brother, Dan, still plays at age 43.

So, while the lads were busy checking out the hurley, I chatted with Paddy Gavin about his trip to America. He told me his group of friends belongs to the Mount Temple Golf Club outside a small village known for its golf course in the midlands of Ireland.

"It's got one pub, one church, one school, one shop and one golf course," Gavin said setting down a candle stick to purchase.. "One of each."

Seems the Irish group of golfers came to America a week ago to play against their Amercian friends they met in Ireland two years ago. The Americans were members of Pinewild Country Club in Moore County and everyone decided after the Irish beat the Americans in that first game in Ireland, that the Americans would take "the cup" home with them and the Irish would have to come to America to get it.

"We had a cup made and we called it Ryder 2," Gavin said.

They played again earlier this week and the Americans won.

"They beat the (bleep) out of us," said Gavin, adding that their American friends will have to come to Ireland to get the cup, as the Irish are bringing the cup home with them this time.

Kirk Tours of Pinehurst transported the group of Irish men to Seagrove. Thanks Sally Larson of Fireshadow Pottery for recommending they stop in my place.