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I guess she’s the kid you would like to have, and at the same time the kid you would have liked to be: she’s a cutie, she’s a lil’ ripper who surfs, kite surfs & snow kites… and she’s only
I first met her while surfing my favorite reef break in Moorea (yeah, the one where I nearly drowned a few months ago): she was in the water on her bright pink surfboard, her dad pushing her in
the waves (so cute!), and I was impressed by this tiny little thing who was charging every wave coming through, surfing them from the beginning to the end, with great style and with a big smile
on her face. She was so cute, so fresh and so happy that just watching her surfing made me feel great… and even though I didn’t know the kid at all, I was proud of what she was doing.
I definitely wanted to know more about this little girl named Kailea, daughter of Titaua Ropiteau (former France’s snowboard champ) and Guillaume Chastagnol (www.chasta.info), snowboard and
snowkite world champ. So when I got to hang out with her parents, I just listened carefully to their words every time they talked about their precious little thing.
The least you can say, is that Kailea is a little mermaid: born in Tahiti, she started swimming in the waves with her dad and learned to surf at age 5, in Huahine, her mom’s home island
(located about 100 miles north west of Tahiti). Pretty impressive for a kiddo, when you know that the only waves she could surf over there were reef breaks!!! No wonder she rips… Better yet,
she first went snow kiting at age 1, all bundled up in her dad’s backpack (!!), learned to ski at age 3 and finally started snow kiting on her own this past winter, in France.
Of course, curious as I am, I couldn’t help checking out her blog (www.kailea.over-blog.com) to learn a bit more about her, and it turns out that Miss Kailea is also a pretty good skater &
kite boarder; for her very first kite boarding session this summer, she did really well: please watch the video, and if you know a little bit about the sport, I guarantee you’ll be amazed by
Kailea’s life is one of endless travels, going from lands of snow to ocean countries, following her dad’s pro schedule as a pro snowboarder / snow kiter / kite boarder. Despite this “busy”
schedule (wish it were mine!), the whole family still spends 6 months a year in French Polynesia, between the beautiful islands of Moorea and Huahine, to reconnect with friends and family
(yeah!!), and to enjoy the great waves and wind our islands offer year-round.
All the things that I saw and heard about her made me reflect on parenting and life as well. Being a mom myself (yeah, who knew?), this is the kind of life I wish to offer to my “mini me”: one
of countless travels, experiences and discoveries, one life that would allow her to expand her horizon as much as possible and to see the beauty of the world she lives in. I strongly believe
that being a parent is all about giving your kids the opportunity to be the best person they can be, to teach them that there’s no limit but the sky, and that they can make all their dreams
come true if they really put their mind to it.
My little one is only 3, and I already took her swimming in the waves, bodyboarding, and kiting with a 1.5m kite (don’t you guys worry about her, I always make sure the conditions are safe for
her): she loves to play with the elements (just like her mommy, yeeaahh!) and it’s a lot of fun to share those moments with her and to see everybody around us smiling when they hear her
laughing and yelling in the water!
Through all these, I also want to teach her that we are lucky to live in a world that has so much to offer, and that we should always be respectful and thankful for what we have and experience
every single day.
Needless to say, I also teach her that going to school is very important and that life is all about finding the right balance that works for you.
In that sense, Guillaume and Titaua are doing an incredible job with their life and their kid, and there’s no doubt Kailea the little mermaid is happy, with a great future ahead of her.
Keep ripping sweetie, we love you!!