YFU Switzerland

Birthday and half – time

Once again a life sign from me from Ecuador

I haven’t written a lot lately, but here I am.

A friend of mine, Carolyn, who is a swiss exchange student living in Ibarra (city in the mountain area of Ecuador) had come to Manta with her host family. Since Manta is close to Portoviejo, I went there to visit her and her family. So on the 4th of january I took the bus in the morning and drove to Manta. There I spent a great beach day with Carolyn and her host family. It was very nice seeing her again and we visited a very beautiful beach. Until now I had never seen the “postcard – motive – beaches” of Ecuador.

Coastal view outside of Manta

Coastal view outside of Manta

We stayed until sunset

We stayed until sunset

"Los frailes", a tourist attraction and beautiful beach

“Los frailes”, a tourist attraction and beautiful beach









On the 5th of january I celebrated my 17th birthday. To be honest I’ve never been less excited for a birthday. I wished I could just skip it and wake up on the 6th of january. My wish didn’t become reality but it wasn’t that bad anyways. I got a little homesick but it was still nice. Some friends came to my house. Mia and Vincent from Germany, Carolyn from Switzerland, two ecuadorian friends and of course my host sisters. My host family had bought cake, so we ate that, talked and later on we went out to eat an ice cream.

My birthday cake

My birthday cake

I don't really like this picture, but it's the only one I have

I don’t really like this picture, but it’s the only one I have









From then my life went on like every day. School in the morning, doing nothing in the afternoons. Even though there are still many TV-series I haven’t watched, that became boring 😉 . So Mia and I decided to start going to Crossfit 2 – 3 times a week. Crossfit is similair to going to the gym. You do exercises with weights but also some cardio training. Even though it’s very hard (especially because I haven’t done sports in 5 month) I really like it. It’s in a group with other people and we all sweat together. Also it feels great to finally move regulary again. I had missed that. I feel the benefits of the exercises through my sore muscles 😉 . I go there by bus, because it would get too expensive to always take the taxi. The buses are quite uncomfortable, you nearly have space for your legs and it’s always very hot. A week ago I was the only one in the bus and I talked to the bus driver for the whole ride. That was a nice experience. Through that I notice how much “ecuadorian” I’ve already got. Not just that my Spanish is good enough to talk to a stranger. Also I don’t get nervous before every bus ride anymore and I also don’t have to prepare myself mentally to shout “PARADA!” (Stop) through the whole bus anymore. I took some photos from the bus, but they aren’t very good because it’s really bumpy all the time. It was that time I was alone in the bus, I would never do that otherwise. Take this advice seriously: NEVER EVER take out your phone in the bus unless you want to take the chance to get robbed.

"Leg space"

“Leg space”

a blurry picture from inside the bus

a blurry picture from inside the bus








I had my last day of school yesterday. Now I have holidays for 3 month!! I haven’t planned a lot yet. My military school is sadly going to change to a normal public school after the holidays. The government decided to shut down half of the military schools in Ecuador. We all find that very sad. Because of that there came a photographer to our school and took pictures of every class. I’m happy he did.

With "my group"

With “my group”

segundo Bachillerato "C"

segundo Bachillerato “C”










On the 21st of january it was exactly half – time of my exchange year here in Ecuador. Today it’s 153 days to go until the exchange ends. Even though the first part hasn’t been easy, I’m thankful for everything I’ve learned and experienced. I feel like I have changed in those months and I think it’s a good change (except the physical change; those “extra exchange – student – kilos” wouldn’t be necessairy 😉 ). I’m looking forward to what’s to come. I’ve built a base now. I have some friends, I know the city, the language and more about the culture. I hope a lot that the second part of my exchange will be filled with more hapiness and good experiences than the first one. But I’m very sure about that.

My post got very long this time. Sorry about that.

In the holidays I have a lot of time, so I am trying to write posts more regulary.

Besitos, Annette