What do you do if you are tall, dark and handsome, 22 years old and winner of the British Open? Answer: you stay at home with mom and dad and shun this week's PGA championship.

"Now I'm at the top, people look the whole time for faults. Now I can't keep calm, If find it difficult to sleep, even here at home," said Severiano Ballesteros.

Home is a rambling, ramshackle two-story hourse - "can't miss it, old on the outside, old on the inside," his father Baldomero had said on the telephone. It is as beautiful and isolated as it is unpretentious, set on a promontory, overlooking the Bay of Santader on one side and the Royal Santader Golf Club on the other.

"I know people expect met to go to the States, now more than ever," said Ballesteros as he walked across the garden and looked out to sea. "But, this may sound ridiculous, it's too far away. On the European circuit, I am, at most, three hours flight from Pedrena. In America it's at least 12 hours. That's the difference."

Pedrena, with its 700 inhabitants - dairy farmers and fishermen - beaches, green hills and golf links is central to Ballesteros' life; and Ballesteros is, of course, the center of attraction in Pedrena. Practically the whole village tuned into the BBC World Service that weekend to cheer their boy on at the Royal Lytham St. Anne's British Open.

In Pedrena it was a foregone conclusion that Baldomer's boy would become the youngest player to win the British Open in this century. They knew he was a champ - ever since he shot a five-under-par 65 at the age of 17 in a caddy tournament on the local greens.

In his moment of triumph at Royal Lytham St. Anne's, his strong familiar ties were evident. At the finish, Ballesteros fellinto a laughing, crying embrace with his eldest brother, Baldomero Jr., a championship golfer in his own right and professional at La Coruna Golf Course, west along the coast from Pedrena.

"My family is all important, we are very united, very close, Ballesteros said. "I hate leaving home, leaving them, to go to a tournament. I feel very lonely away from home. I just want to win and get back here."

His choice of golf as a career is a fortuitous accident. Exactly 50 years ago Alfonso XIII, grandfather of King Juan Carlos, who spent his summer holidays at his Magdalena Palace on the edge of Santader, ordered a golf course to be designed across the Bay at Pedrena. The links were built on land belonging to the family of Carment Sota, Ballesteros' mother.

His father, tall and broad shouldered like his sons, was a champion rower. For many years he rowed for Pedrena in the highly competitive coastal regattas. He competed in heavy shaling boats 12 meters long, 11 oarsmen and a coxswain. In the races, the opponents pursued each other out into the Atlantic.

His mother's brother, Ramon Sota, kept away from the sea. He became a caddy and then a golfer. The Ballesteros boys grew up on newspaper reports of Uncle Ramon winning tournaments, playing in Britain and United States. The boys forgot about rowing and chose golf.

Sota has since pulled out of tournaments. "My nerves have gone," he said. He is now the local pro at the Pedrena Club and knows his nephew thoroughly and was the first to spot his greatness.

"You can't learn how to play great golf," Sota said. "To play great golf is an art, it is born with you, it comes from inside. Seve didn't learn from me, he just watched and if you've got it inside, like he has, you just watch and imitate, or, rather, you do it better."

Down at the golf club, Sota will talk all day about his nephews, Baldomero, 32, at La Coruna, Manuel, 30, who is also a pro at Pedrena, Vicente, 27, a pro at Zaragoza Golf Club, but particularly about the youngest, Seve.

"Steve has got tremendous ability in his hands, he is flexible, he is sgrong and he is hungry for triumphs. His only fault is his youth. He takes too many risks, he doesn't pace his game, he forgets that a big tournament is won in the last two rounds."

Sota backs Ballesteros' decision to stay away from the United States for the time being. "When the PGA offered him the card last year without going through the school this was unprecedented, but the Americans knew what they were doing. They know how good he is, how he can improve his game and theirs. But he is too young to be on his own, there is time for everything."

"Of course it was a great honor," Ballesteros said. "What I did was explain to the PGA that I owed a lot to Europe. I've done three years in Europe, I've made my name here, I owe it to the tournaments here to stay for another two or three years. Then we will see about the States."

Homesickness, youth and continental loyalties apart, there is another reason for his decision to stay at home. Ballesteros is still nursing a three-year-old back injury and long distance travel doesn't help.

"It's ridiculous to say my back will force me out of the game by the time I'm 25. If I take care, I should be fine all my life," Ballesteros said. Then, he admitted that a poor showing earlier this season had a lot to do with his injury.

"Let's see what happens to my back in September when I go to the States for the World Series and the Ryder Cup. I promise I'll cross the Atlantic then," he said.