After my birthday festivities, I stayed up and packed to go to Quito. I got a couple hours of sleep then headed out with my host-parents and brother to Guayaquil. We then flew to Quito and met up with some friends of my host-family who lived in Machala. I had met the daughter of the family who had gone on an exchange to Colorado a year ago the week before going to Quito. The primary reason for going to Quito was that there was a Rotary conference for the new office-holders. I went to the conference and it was quite boring and long (probably on account of me only getting one hour of sleep the previous night). So my host-parents sent me to the house in Quito in taxi; it took one hour because of traffic! My host-parents left in taxi later and still beat me home.
On Saturday we spent with the family. In the afternoon I went with Sebastian, the son who went on an exchange in Minnesota 3 years ago or so, to my first fútbol match! That was fun. It was Liga vs. Deportivo Quito. Liga is pretty much the best team of Ecuador (they won some South American cup or something). They won 1-0 despite getting two red cards in the first half. We sang cheers, confetti flew, and there was a fight between fans with a police intervention.
Later that night I ate a hotdog with ketchup, onions, chips, and pineapple jelly. It was so great.
The next day we went to a really old cow farm from 1643. The owner was a chipper old woman who was the last person in the family to get the house. The place was like a museum, with chapel and an old military uniform in a glass case. There was some connection because the great aunt of the family we were staying with was friends with the owner or something like that.
I went again to the Mitad del Mundo (Middle of the World), but this time with my host-mother and -brother. We checked the museums because this time we went in the morning, and not at night when everything is closed. We went up to the top of the monument and looked from all the sides. We then scoped out all the little artisan shops.
The next morning I went with my host-mom to the artisan shops in Quito, where we spent the whole morning looking and buying. She bought me this sweet sweatshirt with llamas on it that's made from alpaca wool!
Next day we toured the historic downtown, where we passed some churches, the palace of the government, and a little coffee shop, where we ate.
We then flew back to Guayaquil, got in a van, and came back to Machala.