Watch: 118ft of Freedom
Something came over me as I streamed Red Bull King of the Air, frantically packing to be there in person in under 24 hours. This year was momentus; Angely Bouilet - a woman - was finally in, and I was about to get on a flight to see her for myself.
By the time I took off later in the afternoon, it was all over. I couldn't believe it; what normally runs over days - even weeks - was done and dusted on day 1. I missed it. It was a bitter reminder of the fact that inspiration for women in extreme sports is so hard to come by; if you blink, you miss it.
Little did I know that my timing to Cape Town was a lot more perfect than I realised.
A couple of days in, Jalou Langeree and Johanna Catharina Edin (often known as Cata and @franksay on Social Media) announced the (apparently somewhat unplanned) premiere of their new movie, 118 ft of Freedom, starring themselves and the Hawaiian residing shredder Olivia Jenkins at Tigers Milk in Cape Town.
"In the world of kitesurfing, the male gender is dominating the beaches and girls are seen as secondary. Jalou Langeree wanted to prove this wrong and decided to do a girls only trip. Joined by Olivia Jenkins and Johanna Catharina Edin, they went on a trip to find one of the most mesmerising left handers to kite in the world - Flame Balls in the South Coast of Madagascar."
The venue was packed. 20 minutes before it started I had the best seats in the house, 2 metres from the bar, 4 metres from the screen, a seat and a table... 2 minutes before it started, I couldn't even see the bar, I could see the screen if stood on my seat and the table was full of leaning bodies and their bags. The people I was due to meet were queueing outside and never even made it in.
There was energy in that room. 20 minute Kite Surf cinematic indulgence and every single person had a sense of inspiration from their own personal take on this film; whether thats the women riding, the mother nature they chased or the lifestyle they found themselves in. It was mesmerising.
These ladies have managed to capture the truth of Women in Kitesurfing; the wait, the anticipation, the reward. But more than that, they've managed to show their personalities that go behind their hard work; the happiness, the boredom, the frustration, the excitement. All the things that every one of us experiences in our Kitesurf journey, right from the very first lesson and then they sprinkle on top some of the most glorious waves gifted from Madagascar and elegant riding that comes only from determination and patience.
They are deeply connected, they are strong and without trying, they are beautiful.
It is the definition of women in Kiteboarding. Watch it.
We have separately caught up with Jalou and Cata since and for both, it was hard to get the planned questions in when you get an interviewer and interviewee as women so passionate about something.
You can watch the movie here:
Our mission with She Flies is to grow the global wave of Women in Extreme Sports. It can be hard to do that for many reasons but inspiration is the big fat golden key to do it. You see a women riding and you push harder, boost higher, smile wider - our emotional super powers find inspiration through other womens success.
My trip was an unbalanced measure of bitter sweet. That slight bitter reminder of the lack of inspiration out there when missing Angely but the indulgent sweet end in the knowledge that there are women out there who are doing everything in their power to create it. The only thing left for us to do, is to watch it, share it and use it in our own journey.
Get ready world, we're coming.