Week 12 of Samantha Butler’s working trip abroad

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80 Days with Campey Turf Care Systems

During my time at Campey Turf Care Systems I have met so many wonderful people and it is because of these people that the last 80 days have been so great. From the staff at Campey’s to the house mates who accepted me into the house and made my time in the place very entertaining, I cannot thank them all enough. The people and groundsmen I have met along the way and the friends I have made you have all made a lasting memory for me.

I would like to specially thank the Royal Agricultural Society of NSW for allowing me to do this, I know I am only half way through the internship but being able to take on this experience has been amazing. I hope that when I return in October I can share with you what I have learnt and the things I have come across, the differences between the climates and the variety of machinery.  

To Campey Turf Care Systems, thank you for taking me on and trusting Mike O’Keeffe from the Ohio State Program with his recommendation. Richard and Julia have both made sure that I was taken care of at all times. “Frenchie” was always making sure I was fed the decent food when I was around the yard and supplied all the good recommendations for dinner. Dave was often my travel partner when out in the truck with all the machinery. Dave is great as he is the same age and we got along well and the trips where never dull. When driving the hours that we travelled together it is good to not have a dull trip. I wish I could name all the boys but we could be here a while, they were all wonderful and welcomed me into the team just as they would with anyone else.

For the house mates who put up with me and my aussie ways, thank you. I have made some great friends and I hope one day I can show you around my home Australia. To all the good times and to the not so good, we stuck together. From the first pub quiz night to our adventures at the Trafford Centre, the memories will stay forever.

Mike O’Keeffe thank you for trusting me enough to come on this internship. I believe that this trip has allowed me to better myself within the Turf Industry and would highly recommend that if anybody is ever interested in doing something similar to contact Mike at Ohio State University in the USA. The opportunities that you have created for me, I am forever grateful.

However, a big thank you to my family is required, without your love and support I wouldn’t be here doing this internship. Thank you!

My week with Ben was not dull, it was filled with new experiences and learning.

After packing up my gear and spending a day travelling down with Dave – a few minor detours for deliveries were required, we finally made it to East Sussex National Golf Club, this is where we were staying for the night and I was also working with the boys of the Golf Club the next day. 

It was another early start to meet the greenkeepers down at their compound. I was paired up with Harley, one of the Course Deputies. Our first job for the day was to conduct the CSU (Course Set-up), we went along and changed all the holes on the East Course and filled any divots on the tee boxes. We also did a check of the academy course.

After we had finished CSU, all spare bodies were sent out to water. The weather has been warm here and no rain for a good couple of weeks, this is causing a lot of issues for a lot of groundsmen & greenkeepers. Even though nearly 1 million gallons of water is put out over the course overnight, every night, tee boxes were still burning from the heat in the sun.  Thank you to Scoot, Harley and Tom who allowed me this opportunity. It was great to spend the day out on the course with you all.

On Wednesday Ben and I made a few deliveries, with a lot of driving in between. Ben put me up in a nice Hotel on the sea front at Eastbourne.  Eastbourne is a really nice place, and I would recommend it to anyone travelling to the UK. You can also find Brighton and Hove Albion FC just up the road. Ben also took me up to Beachy Head. That was some view!!

Thursday we went to Tottenham Hotspurs Training Facility and due to security and privacy I only have one photo. However, I don’t think there is enough words in the English Dictionary to describe the perfection of this facility. It was immaculate. The buildings, the playing surfaces, the gardens and hotel, it was all amazing. I could not believe it. It is by far the best training facility I have seen in my time here, I was also told it is the best training facility for the Premier League. I thoroughly enjoyed my visit. Thank you Jonesy and Darren for talking with us and taking the time to show us around the facility. 

We then went to Arsenal – were I will be working from Monday. Ben and I caught up with Steve. Daniel then took me on a quick tour of the facility, showing me around, preparing me for Monday.

I cannot wait to take this next challenge on. I may be excited and nervous and everything in between, but it is going to be a good experience and I am hoping to learn a lot.

So as my time ends with Campey’s, another opportunity opens.

For those following my adventure and blogs, I will be writing them now on a fortnightly basis.

Stay tuned, who knows what is to come!!

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