At the end of April I went to Portoviejo to see Marcelo, the exchange student who was in my house in 2004. He had was just finishing his summer break so he invited me to his house. That Friday, I barely caught the bus out of Machala, went to Guayaquil (3 hour bus ride), and then to Portoviejo (3.5 hour bus ride). Marcelo picked me up and took me on a little tour of Portoviejo (he likes to call it Portohueco or Polvoviejo. "Hueco" means hole referring to the numerous potholes in the city and "Polvo" means dust referring to the streets that are filled with it).
We went to the beach city of Manta that night for his dad, who's a doctor, because he had a presentation thing to go to. We went back to the house and Marcelo had some friends from his high school over for karaoke.
The next day we ate a ton: encebollado for breakfast, mapi mint ice cream, ceviche for lunch. Marcelo and I went with his dad to the farm. It had cacao, banana, and cows. We just walked around for a while and sucked some fresh oranges.
It started raining so we left, picking up yucca bread and a corn bread thing on the way home. That night I went to a ballenato concert with Marcelo and his friends. At midnight we all wished Marcelo a happy birthday. We finished the late night with his friends and slept.
Sunday we went to La Crucita, the beach that we went to on the Rotary trip earlier this exchange year. Before we arrived, we stopped for lunch, and I had a typical plate from the province of Manabi: viche which is a soup with peanuts (common in Manabi), fish, and plantains.
We went to the lookout point place where people parachute from the cliff. We got to see one guy jump off! We headed down to the beach, and I walked on the shore with Marcelo a little. It was kind of overcast so we didn't swim at all.
Back in Portoviejo, Marcelo, Leonardo (Marcelo's brother), and I packed our bags and got on the bus for Guayaquil. We got to their apartment at 12:30 at night and crashed. Marcelo had early classes the next day so he left, then later Leonardo sent me off to the bus terminal for my trip back to Machala. That was a super fast trip.