This is a special post, because for the first time ever I was able to travel to see Patrick in competition live. It will be a very long post where I will add in some of my personal experiences as appropriate. Also, I will keep updating this post as I sort through my raw footage and photos from the trip. By popular request, see below for more details on how I got Patrick’s autograph!
January 14: My Enigmatic Encounter with Patrick
Yes, I am one lucky fan, having witnessed in person Patrick’s record-shattering 10th victory and getting his autograph on my banner!
.@Pchiddy Thank you Patrick for taking a moment to sign my banner today. 😊 Congratulations and I wish you the very best on your final Olympic journey! pic.twitter.com/dYwM9NyFrH
“I felt like my environment was taking a toll on kind of my mental well-being, and I wanted to be in a place that I thought was once again inspiring,” Chan said. “One of the biggest things that pulled me towards the west was first of all just being back in Canada and not feeling like such a stranger as I go about my life everyday. And also there’s a lot of things in B.C. that really attracted me. You guys all know I’ve always been a very outdoorsy person, and very much connected to the outdoors and there’s no better place than British Columbia.”
“I can always see the light at the end of the tunnel lately. I was missing that in Michigan.”
My Banner to Cheer on Patrick at Nationals
I created this banner to bring with me to Vancouver – it turned out pretty well and I hope Patrick likes it!
Patrick has withdrawn from the NHK Trophy and will not be attending the Grand Prix Final this year (a big loss to his Japanese fans). But that does not mean his fans (both professional and casual) are not actively talking about him or preparing to see him the next time he competes. From interviews to music videos to buying tickets, they are committed to supporting him!
November 30: Patrick to be in Quebec / A Break from Marina?
On this last day of the month (and therefore the last update to this month-long post) came little tidbits of updates about Patrick for us, the news-starved fans! Hat tip to the eagle-eyed fans who brought some of these to my attention!
He must decide everything for himself… his skating is unique, unforgettable, no one can compare with him.
Skate Canada Challenge, November 29-December 3, 2017
This was the only announcement that Patrick would be in Quebec this weekend that I could find. Skate Canada’s event webpage does not mention the athlete ambassadors.
Patrick’s free program was a struggle, but he bravely and beautifully fought his tiredness to the end. Even though fans were shocked that he did not make the podium, he received a bundle of support and stuffed animals, too! The next day, I am proud that he skated a fun and happy EX program, “Oh, What a Night!”
November 3: NHK Trophy Withdrawal
Nope! Patrick will not be going to Japan after all!
And so SCI 2017 has begun! Patrick missed his flight and lost his luggage, but he spoke about looking forward to life after competitive skating and said to his fans, “thank you for liking me for who I am, not just for my skating.” But after a “crazy and not comfortable week”, he did well in the short program, scoring 94.43 and taking second!