Thank you Mao!

She will always be special for me. Special and most beloved.

Yesterday was a sad day. How else it can be, when the great figure skater, the legend says goodbye to the sport? It’s always terribly sad. But when this is your most favorite figure skater it’s heartbreaking.

There are special skaters for me. And Mao is not just one of them. I always liked figure skating, but until 2008 I watched only the Olympics and those big competitions that were shown on TV. I started to follow skating closely after NHK Trophy 2008.

Switching the channels, I was stumbled on a view….Mao was gorgeously skating to the Masquerade waltz by Khachaturian. I was stunned and amazed how such a fragile and delicate skater can correspond to such huge and powerful music. She made me fall in love with figure skating….So she will always be special for me. Special and most beloved.

A risky girl, a maximalist and a true grace on the ice. For her a cheered the most, in Sochi the most bitter tears were because of her. I wished her Olympic gold, like I haven’t wished it to anyone else. But it just wasn’t meant to be. Well, not everything is measured by Olympic gold medal. Many great athletes do not have it. It can not guarantee you viewer’s love. While Mao is loved by millions.

I guess we all wanted a beautiful ending of the career for her: at least standing ovation of the crowded arena. But she decided otherwise. She could do that for example at  the National Championships, but being not only a great athlete but also an honorable person with a big heart she decided not to steal the moment of shine from the others. A great athlete and a great person.

For someone she’s a girl who jumped triple axel, a World champion, a girl who hasn’t won the Olympics….but for me she’ll always be that girl in a black dress skating to gorgeous waltz by Khachaturian, a skater who brought passion for figure skating into my life. Thank you Mao. Thank you for pushing woman’s skating forward, your beautiful rivalry with Yuna was always fascinating to watch, in that rivarly my heart was always on your side. Thank you and good luck in your new life.

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4 Comments on Thank you Mao!

  1. viscacha // 12/04/2017 at 00:30 // Reply

    beautiful picture and heartfelt, sincere writing. i’ve been rreading many articles about Mao’s retireing but this is the best!

  2. Judith // 11/04/2017 at 21:03 // Reply

    Thank you for this beautiful appreciation. I am glad to know Mao sets the standard for you.

    Truly, I have never witnessed such a global outpouring of love for a retiring skater. It is richly deserved.

  3. So beautiful, thank you!!

  4. Mad for Skating // 11/04/2017 at 17:53 // Reply

    The first time I saw Mao was at the 2010 Olympics. I was 7 and never really watched skating. She was performing her “Bells of Moscow” free program, and I thought she was a fairy queen. So much elegance and talent, and she was only 19! To this day, that remains one of my fondest memories from all my years of watching figure skating.

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