Seeing Spain

Seeing Spain


I’m a UX designer that follows fear into designing something that addresses frustration head-on. My trip to Spain ignited some unprompted fears. It was a good opportunity to remove myself from the college and catch a little autonomy.

Nothing was working while I was trying to gain independence. I wanted to learn how to learn.

Plan for Europe

I had had a couple of rough job interviews.  I would instinctively react negatively to the simply bureaucratic.  I want to know how I will spend my time.  That’s hard to do within the boundaries of an interview.

Time to leave town. I had now found the opportunity to leave the country.

Modified Backpacking

Spain was my first stop. I left behind the usual diet and routine. While there, I ate avocados and carbs. Sometimes coffee, sometimes red wine.
I wasn’t backpacking as much as I was being hosted with little overhead on my part.

After Landing

I was somewhere on a Spanish field overlooking a cliff.It was scary.  It might not even have been a cliff.

Tiny logistical hurdles got in the way of just catching museum hours at the right time.  Outdoors was a great fallback.

Where I was staying, conversationalists were orbiting a couch.  I m not sure I can find it on a google map now, but it was memorable to talk with people staying at this dorm.

I survived on a salt and pepper avocado diet and took some to the cliff wall.  Not being a geologist, I told myself, “those slabs are made out of lime.” They looked unstable, and  I pictured them falling apart while I was there. Did I fall? No.

In some of the first conversations I tried sparking up in a country, I am pretty certain I got into the comfortable topic about the price of eggs.

I was always in search of spicy food.  There is little doubt I was doing detective work to find where I could find some jalapenos.  Where did I end up finding the spiciest food? I found a 4-ounce jar of sport peppers in the back aisle of a grocery store.


My trip was done through friends of friends. My hosts were not even acquaintances. I was fortunate.

I went to Bilbao where there were nice museums. The museums were closed when I went, which was probably due to the time at the end of a school year. The shell of the Guggenheim was already the main attraction. It has an unforgettable exterior.

There was a lot of walking and partying. I took every good chance to hang outside observe hilly views. I made sure not to stay at any one place in Europe too long, though.

There was a lot of landscape to remember.  It was foggy at times, with a bit of anxiety still from trying to detach myself from daily pressing routines - as many would.  That pressure felt like needing to go outside but wanting to go indoors.

I put myself in charge of waking up early. Keeping an eye out for those amenities and the occasional casual party. I was focused on leaving pending tasks to stay pending until I got back to the states.

Seeing Spain
René M. Paccha

René couples creativity with an analytic process. He loves to help and show how information bubbles up from data when extracted from search engines,

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