Walking down the street, you would never notice David Chin. He doesn’t cover himself in pins like most Olympic fans and he doesn’t wear his country’s name like a badge across his chest. His looks don’t scream Olympic super fan, but his history with the Olympic games stretches over 35 years.
Chin’s Olympic adventure started back in his home country of Canada during the 1976 Montreal games. Since then, Chin has caught what he calls the Olympic fever as he has now attended 10 Olympic games as he adds London to his list.
“It’s not just the sports. It’s the atmosphere, the people, the friendliness,” he said. “Every (athlete) is willing to spend the time to talk with you. It’s amazing how the games can change people’s attitudes (to others).”
Chin has seen more than just events at the Olympics. He usually buys about six to seven tickets for each Olympics, but has seen his fair share of Opening Ceremonies, sitting in on Seoul, Atlanta, Sydney and Athens’ ceremonies.
“This is a once in a life time experience,” he said. “Most athletes may only get one chance. It only happens every four years, or two if you count the winter Olympics.”
For Chin, the Olympics has truly become a family affair. Chin’s daughter has worked at a handful of Olympic games and is in graduate school training to work for the IOC.
She started as a volunteer in the 2010 games as a hostess for an Olympic family, Chin said. Her host was the president of the Ethics Commission, and he and his wife didn’t speak English. His daughter was a perfect hostess becasue she speaks five languages.
Chin has no plans to stop his Olympic trips. He said he plans for months before the games and works out his holidays to be during the games so he won’t miss a single day.
He has spent much of his life traveling or living in other countries.
“I’m Canadian, living a lot of my time in Hong Kong, driving a French rental car from Paris and now in the United Kingdom,” he joked.
No one can attend just one Olympics, he said.
“This will not be someone’s first and only Olympics,” he said. “They say you catch a bug. You have no choice but to come back.”