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Original Issue

No matter where your travels take you, be sure to pack your golf clubs


The golfer who cares not so much how he swings as where will enjoy a new book called Golf: New Horizons (Thomas Y. Crowell, $5.95), written by Gene Sarazen and Peter McLean in conjunction with Pan American Airways. The book is subtitled "Pan Am's Guide to Golf Courses Round the World." It should interest the golfer who can only contemplate a world tour as well as the man who can make one.

New Horizons is filled with photographs, maps and informative introductions to each of the nine areas it deals with (Europe, Scandinavia, the Caribbean, South America, Hawaii and the South Pacific, Asia and the Philippines, the Middle East, Africa and North America), but its main strength lies in the amazing wealth of detail produced by Pan American's far-flung offices. Consider this entry from the chapter on Belgium concerning an obscure club near Ghent, the Royal Golf Club les Buttes Blanches:

LOCATION: Ghent (10 minutes by car from Gand).
COURSE SIZE: 18 holes; 6,390 yards; par 73.
GREEN FEES: Weekdays, $2; weekends, $3; per week. $10.
CADDIE FEES: $2 per round.
CLUBHOUSE FACILITIES: Restaurant and bar.
RECOMMENDED ACCOMMODATION: Deurle: Hotel St. Cristoffle.

This is merely one of several hundred courses so listed. Offered are such interesting little tidbits as the fact that at the Oarai Golf Club in Japan (7,200 yards, par 72) the green fee can run as high as $15, but the caddie (usually an attractive Japanese girl) will cost only $1 for a round. Or that at the Cosmopolitan Club in Madras, India (6,030 yards, par 72), a visitor can play a round of golf for no more than 50¢ and hire a caddie, and a forecaddie as well, for the grand total of 35¢. The forecaddie comes highly recommended by Authors Sarazen and McLean. He is there to guard your tee shot from the larcenous birds and monkeys who have apparently concluded that golf balls are as edible as eggs.

In some arid areas of Australia and India, it might be advisable for the touring golfer to carry a small broom in his bag. Where the grass won't grow on the greens—which are called browns—sand, or a mixture of sand and oil, is used for the putting surface. On the greens, or browns, it is perfectly legal to sweep a smooth path from ball to hole.

If you are making a trip to Thailand, don't expect to play much golf unless you are there in December through February. The rest of the year is too hot or too rainy. But since when has weather stopped a golfer?