Driving all over the place ? that?s on and off the course ? in search of great golf has, for better or worse, become my life?s work. Most of my time nowadays is spent searching ? either staring at a map trying to find a golf club or, after I?ve eventually arrived, standing deep in the rough looking for that half-decent Titleist. Of the two, I waste more time searching for courses than I do for balls.

Golf clubs are hard to find because they are almost invariably buried deep in the countryside rather than conveniently located just off the high street. It occurs to me that they deliberately make it difficult because they really don?t want people to find them. If they were easy to locate, more people would play on them and the busier the courses would be, which is obviously not what some of the members want. So vigilante groups of disaffected members regularly go out at night tearing down the signs that say ?Golf Club This Way? thereby condemning hapless hackers like me to spend the rest of their lives peering into the distance looking for tell-tale flags fluttering in the breeze.

But my flag-peering days are about to end because I?ve just bought a satellite navigation system. I tried it out over the weekend and a sexy-sounding woman took me by the metaphorical hand and steered me around the mean streets of Sussex. Particularly impressive was her equable temperament, especially when I needlessly provoked her by disobeying clear instructions. Instead of getting all huffy as women ordinarily do, she simply took a deep breath, made a few quick calculations and offered a new set of directions.