P is for Patrick (My A to Z of Software Testing, Part 7)

“P” was going to be for Passion, but then I thought “that’s too passé, why not encapsulate the essence of passion instead”. Patrick is a genuine, down-to-earth kinda guy who has provided me with an enormous amount of inspiration and support over the past couple of years. In fact, I’ve never told him this, but when I was planning to close down my Blog, early last year, it was Patrick who inspired me to carry on. Sometimes we need someone on the outside to slap us back into line!!

Patrick is one of those people you bump into one day and they immediately make you feel that your day is better for having met them. It may come as a surprise, to some of you, but we didn’t even meet face to face for me to form an opinion that this man was going to make a difference to my life. And so it was, roughly 9 months after we first exchanged “online hellos”, that Patrick did something for me that will live with me for the rest of my life.

I was aware that Patrick had a hobby (and a small online business) carving and selling wooden objects. I knew this because he would provide vivid descriptions of his “shed time” via his Twitter feed. I also knew that he was scaling back his wood carving activities. However, this did not deter him from creating a magical wedding present for my daughter and her husband-to-be.

I finally met Patrick, in early November last year, while we were both attending the EuroSTAR software testing conference in Maastricht, Holland. It was like meeting up with an old school friend, someone you know that, even if you only catch up every 5 or 10 years, you will instantly reconnect and have a great time. We spent far less time together that I had hoped, but we were both there to work and my trip was a very last minute affair, so my planning was haphazard to say the least.

What struck me most about meeting Patrick in person was that he had an air of calm and grace. His smile was infectious and warm and I felt happy in his presence. Patrick has never told me that he is passionate about his work (or about anything else for that matter), it’s just blindingly obvious from the way he conducts himself. In fact, he is self-deprecating and slightly vulnerable around the edges. There is a subtle humanity to this man that will serve him greatly as his stature in our community grows.

If all this sounds like a classic “bromance”, I make no apology. My blog has always focused on my personal view of the software testing business and community within which I reside and Patrick is an integral part of that community. If you too want to meet Patrick you can find him (as I did) on Twitter @TestPappy or via his Blog at http://www.TestPappy.wordpress.com

Dateline: Melbourne, Tuesday May 10, 2016

Postscript:- Kirsty McColl was a vastly under-rated singer/songwriter who wrote a classic pop song entitled “Patrick” – somewhat profoundly it appeared on my iTunes playlist just as I was finishing this post!!


4 thoughts on “P is for Patrick (My A to Z of Software Testing, Part 7)

  1. Pingback: My community – quo vadis? | Test Pappy

  2. Dear Colin/Jim/Klaas,
    I want to thank all three of you. I have no idea why I have deserved this blog post. I gave you the adjective “reliable”, because I can only say you are reliably surprising, reliably inspiring, and reliably made me think about me and my position in the profession. You are reliably supportive for so many of us, and you would rather deserve the “P for passion”. As you would deserve the rest of the alphabet as well.
    I can say I am happy that you continued writing your blog, not knowing that it might have been me, because your blog is a reliable source for inspiration, insights and wisdom.
    Thank you, sir! It is an honor to know you.

    • Hi TP, my inspiration for this post came from your input last week when you said that I should write about Passion (for P). So, over the past few days I was thinking about how to tackle this without going down the usual path of “I’m passionate about Testing” etc. Then I started thinking about various people that I consider to be passionate about more than just what we do for a job. The effort you put in to my daughter’s present and the generosity you showed in refusing payment underpinned my thoughts about you as a person. I remembered also when we met at EuroSTAR that I made a promise to do something for you in return. This Blog post was just one small way in which I could repay your generosity and kindness. I intend to do more in the future when I get the opportunity. I hope we can catch up again soon and spend more time together. Take care my friend.

      • The inspiration for “P as in Passion” came while reading your blog. But I guess you were aware of that.

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