This week we are excited to continue our Meet the Fit Testers series by introducing you to another incredible member of our fit testing team, meriko. meriko currently lives on the California coast, but she and Alpine Parrot Founder and CEO Raquel met all the way across the world at a tech conference in New Zealand. Since then, they have stayed in touch not only because of their shared technical knowledge but also due to their mutual love of cute animal videos (such as this). With that in mind, we couldn’t wait to sit down and virtually chat with meriko about her experience thus far with Alpine Parrot.
While meriko and Raquel have known each other for a few years, I met meriko for the first time during our video call. Immediately I could feel her magnetic presence—she is someone who brings her full attention to the table, and I appreciated her thoughtfulness and insight during our conversation. A seasoned engineering executive, meriko is someone who takes in the beauty of the world and outdoors no matter what she’s doing, whether it’s hiking, kayaking, or simply noticing the way the sun is hitting the leaves in a tree. She is an avid photographer, loves to cook, read, travel, and see the small things that can bring joy. These passions, combined with her attention to detail, are just part of what makes her such a valued member of our fit testing team!
When discussing her fit testing experience, meriko shared with us that she prefers a pant that is multifaceted. She looks for pants that can be used in an urban or rural environment, for example: going on a hike that ends at a winery and feeling comfortable that they fit the environment enough to enjoy a bite and sip. She felt that the Ponderosa Pant has that potential, while also appreciating the diverse fit that can be accomplished by the built-in belt. She also enjoyed the size of the pockets—for someone who loves to take photos, she could easily fit her phone in both landscape and portrait mode (she did lead the creation of the iPhone camera, after all).
While I haven’t been present during the actual fit testing with Raquel, something I have heard from many of the fit testers is an appreciation for the respect that their bodies are given during the process, and that is SO important to us. Every person should feel like their body is beautiful and respected, regardless of size, race, physical abilities, or gender expression. meriko shared with me a moment during her fit testing experience where she held up a pair of the Ponderosa Pants in front of her, observing their make, and stated, “these pants are shaped like me!” It was powerful to hear. These aren’t just pants, but tools to break down the barriers to getting outside.
Stay tuned for more tales from our fit testing and production journey, and if you haven't already, meet Vero.
Cover image: Hanging Rock, on the Burramoko trail in the blue mountains of Australia; photographed by Layton Duncan.
Black and white photo: Ushuaia, Argentina; photographed by Daniel Shiplacoff.