Hello, and welcome to our golf and travel adventures!
We are Menekse and James, the intrepid traveling golfers behind Puttering around the World. In 2018, we set out to travel the world with just our backpacks and golf clubs.
So, you’re probably wondering what Puttering around the World is all about. Well, our inspiration was planted back in 2016 when we took a nearly 4-month sabbatical that had a lasting impact on us. We spent a month in Thailand, then 2 weeks in Cambodia, and 2 weeks in Laos, before returning to Thailand for another 2 months. There was so much we wanted to see and so much that we wanted to do that we were constantly on the go. It wasn’t until over halfway through our trip that we finally began to slow down. We stayed in the same places longer. We took walks. And we even took naps! We wasted more time and we enjoyed each other. We realized that we had become the owners of our own time.
It was somewhere on a deserted beach in Koh Lanta Noi that we began dreaming how great it would be to not have to get on the flight back home. We wanted nothing more than to continue and to see the next new place. To experience the next new experience. And to continue slowly. That is probably where Puttering around the World really started. In our hearts. In our longing to enjoy everything life has to offer.
Welcome to our Golfabond Life
It wasn’t even 4 months after the return from our sabbatical that we were still longing for that feeling of being the owners of our own time. To be able to continue and to see the next new place. We began dreaming and wishing. And about 6 months later we decided to do it again. But this time we wanted to travel longer. And slower. And more permanently! So, we made a plan and set a date. We gave ourselves 14 months to prepare. To tell our families, and our employers. To sell our stuff. And to prepare ourselves! But how do you prepare for something where the unknown is significantly greater than the known?
But we wanted to travel a little differently this time. We wanted to play golf! So, we set out to tackle the world with only our backpacks and golf clubs instead of checked baggage! We realize that will make travel a little more challenging, and maybe a little less flexible. But we really want to play golf all over the world, so that is what we are going to do. Can’t you just see us checking into hostels with golf clubs on our backs??!!
That’s Puttering around the World!
Menekse and James
How We Met
As with all good stories, how we met starts with a washing machine….
I, Menekse, was moving from Germany to Turkey for work and was selling the last few things from my apartment.
Meanwhile, James had just arrived in Germany from the US for work and was buying everything for his new apartment.
I sent an email to friends to help me sell my last few things. A few forwards later, James received my email and was interested in my washing machine. He replied, and we arranged a time so he could look at it.
James didn’t speak a word of German. And me, well, let’s just say that my English was rusty. But we still managed to communicate somehow. I was relieved that I had sold my washing machine and James was excited that he didn’t have to travel to the laundromat anymore!
Two days later James called me and asked if I could help him learn German. Cheeky devil!
This is how our story began.
This is Menekse
Hi, I’m Menekse, and I do the travel writing on our Slow Travel page.
Born on the 1st of January, I possess some of the typical characteristics of a Capricorn. Impatience, stubbornness, and an inclination to know-it-all, and I love to follow the rules.
But I am also reliable, loyal, responsible – and very very persistent, and strong-willed.
I have a lot of patience when something is important to me and when I want to achieve something specific. Even if it takes forever.
That’s pretty much my nature.
The only thing which is probably untypical for a Capricorn is that I prefer the sea over the mountains. I love the ocean. The smell of the ocean. The sound of the waves. And I love the moon and stars.
When I was young, my parents and I used to spend our summer holidays in Turkey, our home country. At that time, I thought there is no other place in the world with such beautiful stars. Or so many of them!
But I am a curious person and love to travel! And I wanted to see more of the world than just Nürnberg (my birthplace) and Turkey to find out if there are other places in the world with such starry skies.
So, in the hopes of being able to travel more and explore new places, I became a travel agent.
But believe it or not, working in a travel agency is an office job, which putt (haha) me behind a desk rather than on an airplane.
Nevertheless, over the years I have put together a beautiful collection of starry skies and all shades of blue oceans.
But my thirst to see more, experience more, and travel more is not satisfied.
I love life. And the world.
And the older I get, the more I want to break out of my own characteristics.
To explore the world and to just roll with it.
I want life to teach me. To show me places. And to tell me stories.
But how? And, can I do it?
Why don’t you tell me!
Follow me on my journey called life.
Follow me as I go “Puttering around the World“…
Yours in travel,
This is James
Hi, I’m James. And I do the golf writing on our Quick Pars page.
I like to describe myself as “just a dumb kid from Dundee, Oregon”. Why you ask?
Originally from Oregon, I’ve lived abroad since 2008 and relish the personal experiences that I have gained. I never imagined that one day I would walk on the Great Wall, be crushed in the crowds that are Times Square on New Year’s Eve, or play the Old Course. And I feel extremely fortunate to have been where I’ve been, to see what I’ve seen, and to have done what I’ve done.
I grew up tagging along with my parents as they played golf. I must admit that I was more interested in hitting daisies than golf balls, and was much more proficient at it. But golf has pretty much been in my life for as long as I can remember.
While I probably still am better at hitting daises than golf balls, I enjoy golf. I enjoy the challenge of the game, the beauty of the courses, and the camaraderie that the game fosters.
I don’t have a static bucket list of courses to play, mostly because it changes every day. I’m also not really interested in playing the world’s top 100, although I won’t say no.
I’m just a guy who wants to play the most interesting golf courses the world has to offer. Interesting, as defined by, well, us!
I’m really looking forward to teeing up the next chapter of my life- even though it’s not all quite known.
But, is it ever?
Yours in golf,