Catriel Guillén is a Senior Software Engineer at X-Team who started the year off strong by achieving one of his long-time goals: going for a skydive. In this interview, we talk about his experience skydiving, the reason why he wanted to do it, and whether he would do it again.

Keep Moving Downward, in this case

Catriel, congratulations on doing something most people would never want to do. Where did you skydive and why did you decide to do it?

Thank you so much! It was in Melipilla, a small town to the south of Santiago in Chile. It's something I've dreamed about doing for as long as I can remember. I just hadn't been able to until now, when my girlfriend bought a skydiving session as a birthday gift (she's the best). I'm hoping to buy a skydiving session for my mother's birthday as well, because it's been one of her dreams too.

I was going to ask what your family said about your dream to go skydiving, but it seems they were already pretty on board with it?

Well, my mother and I have been talking about skydiving for years. Mostly in December, when we try and make a year-end resolution to skydive the next year. But we never got round to it until my girlfriend contacted the skydiving center and made the reservation. So yes, both my mom and my girlfriend were really excited for me, since I'd been talking about it for years.

So how was it? Were you nervous?

I wasn't too nervous a few hours before the jump. I was just enjoying the beautiful weather and was even a little impatient while other people were boarding the plane, jumping, and landing. But I was excited, to the point where I didn't eat breakfast or lunch.

Eventually, we got on the plane and went up. Right before the jump, everything is just so unreal. You're there and you barely understand what's happening. I couldn't believe I was finally doing it. I'll admit I wanted the moment right before the jump to last forever, so I wouldn't have to actually jump.

But I let the professionals do their job and shut myself down for a moment so I wouldn't panic. When we jumped, I felt a huge amount of pressure from the air, like the wind was pushing me up while freeing me from everything else (even my own thoughts). My goggles pressed so hard against my head I thought I wouldn't be able to see anything.

I lost all sense of control and shouted for a bit. As best I could, I tried to enjoy the beautiful view and make funny poses for the pictures. This is harder than it seems because you're dropping at such high speeds.

After the jump, I felt a little dizzy. Maybe because I hadn't eaten anything. I felt like I was still floating. But mostly, I felt relieved. I had my feet on the ground. I was safe. And I'd accomplished something I'd been wanting to do for my entire life.

Would you do it again?

Definitely yes! But I'll make sure to eat something before the jump. Maybe my mother's birthday would be a great opportunity to enjoy this experience again.

Do you want to join a company full of daredevils like Catriel? You can! X-Team is always looking for experienced software engineers. Send through your application today.