The Golf Spirit at the Empire

What I am about to narrate here is something that if it happened to someone else, I would have dismissed it and probably said that that person's brain needs a bit of a check up. I have heard many stories at the Empire and the RBGCC in Jerudong and have smiled everytime I hear those stories. But this time you read and decide.

I am writing this immediately after I just got back from the Empire playing night golf. Ever since I started using a cane before the fasting month, I have not played golf that much. It was only last week that my cousin in law persuaded me to play a full 18 hole course at the RBA golf club. This afternoon, I was having lunch with my former retirement agency's investment manager and a Singaporean bank colleague when the subject of golf cropped up. They said why not play golf tonight - it has been ages since I last played at the Empire and I thought why not.

So we met at 6.30 pm at the Empire and after all 3 of us did the Maghrib prayer at the Club house, we started to tee off at hole #1. Timing wise, it was still Maghrib really but with all the floodlights we did not really notice. Well, fairly usual, golfers don't notice much other than the balls and the clubs. Tee off was okay, hole no #1 was fine. It was at the end of hole #1 before I got back into the buggy, I realised that my hybrid iron wood club #4 was not in my golf bag. I must have looked quite puzzled when my buggy partner asked me what's wrong. I told him I didn't have the #4 as I was pretty sure that no one has touched my bag at home and I don't think I left it as I did not use it. My partner offered to drive back so that we could search for it. It was a $500 Taylormade Rescue Club and even if it is now a well used club and has lost its value since, I still don't want to lose that club. But I decided against it and told him to drive on to Hole #2 and tried to persuade myself that I must have misplaced it at home or left it in my other golf bag.

At the tee off at hole #2 when I put in my driver back in the club, I checked all my clubs again and still the #4 was the only club missing and it was still until the end of hole #2. At hole #3, after the tee off, my ball was still some 200 metres away from the green and I normally would use my hybrid iron wood club #2 to get that distance. So I pulled out my #2 club and drive the ball to its usual distance with that club about 130+ metres in my case. When I wanted to put the #2 club back in the bag, I was very startled and taken aback. The #2 was already in the bag. I immediately looked at the club in my hand - it was the missing #4!

I looked at my partner and he looked at me and realised that something was really really amiss. He didn't say a word and I didn't want to say anything either. He understood what happened and it was a pretty sobering play soon after that. We tried to keep our spirits (I need to find a better word than that) by laughing fairly loudly at our golf antics. But suffice to say, the place suddenly looked eerie. It was worse when you have to go to the rough and stand all alone with the wood looming down on you.

I tried to reason it throughout the rest of the 6 holes but it was impossible not to have seen or mistaken the #2 or #4. You see - clubs are of different shapes and length. The hybrid iron wood #2 and #4 looked different than the drivers (huge and long clubs) or the irons (small and short clubs) - the #2 and #4 looked like small drivers but not as long as the drivers and at the same time #2 is about 3 inches longer than #4. In my case the #2's shaft is also different as it is made of titanium and the #4 even though the same brand is made of steel. You can tell that they are different and that there is no way to make a mistake with either one. Anyway - all I can come up is - someone 'borrowed' my club. Maybe to remind us that we should not be playing during Maghrib?

I believe in the supernatural world but normally still takes supernatural stories with huge pinches if not bottles of salt. But when my own golf clubs are being 'borrowed' and returned and changed while still being held in my hand has to take the cake. Maybe I ought to have my head examined. Maybe....


Anonymous said…
ive heard this "borrowed club" story from three different person who experienced it, including you..
Anonymous said…
thats it!! no more night golf for me.
Anonymous said…
I think that is why we are discouraged from going out during Maghrib. It is said that the bad spirits are everywhere during that time. Even if you are outdoors, try to confine yourself in a closed place such as a car.

That's what I was taught :)
Anonymous said…
As a true Muslim, we should avoid going out during Magrib regardless playing golf or any sports activities or shopping. Its time for praying after a long day at work! Can't we spend more time at prayer mat during Magrib and Isya since we all are busy the whole day in the morning and afternoon! We should be thankful that God still love us AND HE is only tested us with minor incident! May be and don't be regretted if God tests us with bigger incident like facing death while playing golf! Are we well prepared to face God? Sorry, I am not joking but remind my true muslim brothers to uphold and respect our 5 Pillars of Islam. There should be a balance in everything we do.
Anonymous said…
My My... So "they" have started to love the beautiful game of Golf. Honestly this is the first time I have heard of it. I have only heard of golf balls gone missing and then being returned. After they hit the ball its on the fairway but when they go to the ball it is not there. Unbelieveable, Believe it! hahahah.

I guess after the 'Hysteria' which hit my school a couple of years back I do get as jumpy as I used to be.

As long as you do not miss your prayers, always sedekah salawat and tawakal, Insya Allah everything will be fine.

Fear nothing other that his Al-Mighty Allah.
Anonymous said…
Spooky...on a lighter note, maybe David Blaine was somewhere about and I'm sure this kind of tricks is easy money for him :-) On a more serious note, whats the history of the golf course? Was it a reclaimed area?
FlyBoy said…
The Jinn are at work again.
Anonymous said…
"They" the "Hysteria Maker" from SiRT school were rumored being transfered to Bukit Shahbandar which is just walking distance to the empire golf course. Something for a thought...hehehe
Aaron John said…
I am not a student of theoretical physics and my formal education in physics is limited to O Levels. But I do love reading physics books and scientific magazines. So I am quite familiar with the basics of some of its theories and concepts such as multiple and parallel universes, the fourth (some say up to the eighth dimension), dark matter etc.

To my knowledge, these concepts arise from quantum theory. Elementary particles do not follow the regular laws so physicists have to come up with new explanations. Strip away the mathematics (which I don’t understand anyway) these theories have at least one thing in common in their explanations: other universes existing and interacting with our universe.

Some of these theories made their ways into popular fiction. In Timeline (the book not the movie), the story is about some scientists traveling through time (except they are not because they are actually jumping to other universes – in the movie, they change it to a wormhole).

I first found out about these ideas when I was reading about the uncertainty principle in Stephen Hawking’s A Brief History of Time (took me a long time to finish that book). The first thought that came to my mind was: aren’t these things in fact the Jinn world and/or The Ghaib world? After all, in the Holy Quran Surah Al Fatihah, verse 1 (Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the WORLDS). Wallahu wa’lam.

Some BR readers also mentioned the STPRI incidents (I assumed the school mentioned was STPRI). I wonder what they think of mental disorders such as Schizophrenia and Multiple Personality Disorder (nowadays it is called Dissociative Identity Disorder). Some people who are possessed look like they are living in a different world. Or like someone in a drug-induced state. Sometimes they talk about people we can’t see (sort of having imaginary friends). And for some people, it is not temporary.

I know because I have cousins who are like these. When I first read about schizophrenia in a Time magazine article almost 20 years ago, I thought: are my cousins having schizophrenia? The symptoms are definitely there and according to that article, in the old days, schizophrenic people were thought of being possessed. I never actually told people about what I thought. Not many people had heard of that disorder in those days. Besides, I had just entered secondary school so what do I know. People who have seen that movie about the life of Nobel Laureate John Nash who suffers from schizophrenia (played by Russell Crowe in “A Beautiful Mind”) would see how he experienced some forms of hallucinations. Although in reality, John Nash only experienced auditory hallucinations – just voices and not seeing things. By the way, all except for one of my cousins are much better these days.

Maybe all these extra dimensions, universes and disorders arise due to the fact that these scientists don’t want to accept the existence of the metaphysical world and then have to deal with the biggest issue: the existence of God. Some scientists do tackle some philosophical issues. But some like Richard Feynman prefers to just examine and experiment the physical world and not bothering about God.

Anyway, regarding Mr BR’s clubs, a physicist would probably say that at those moments, the clubs vanished to the other universes and somehow came back. A psychiatrist or a psychologist would probably say that Mr BR was hallucinating. Me, I think the Jinns did it!
Ihsan said…
eeee, that's so creepy! I try not to go out during Maghrib in Brunei, but here in the UK, the Maghrib is blue (haha) so macam, it doesn't feel like Maghrib. And sometimes, we have no choice but to go out at that time anyway, so maybe its a good thing I don't mind. :P I just hope nothing creepy happens!
Anonymous said…
Darn! I was thinking of trying out night golf. I heard stories from all different courses but not at Empire. Thats it! I guess i just have to stick to waking up very early in the morning and join to Q to tee off...*sigh*
Anonymous said…
Let's just be thankful that it was only your golf club which was 'borrowed' :p.

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