Guano – It’s not what you think it is!

Since the last time I updated the blog, the Huaca’s celebrated Valentine’s Day with a yummy cake. Ecuadorian’s know how to do Valentine’s day! All day long I saw women (and a few men!) carrying flowers, chocolates, stuffed animals, and people kissing everywhere!

This past weekend was Carnavale in Ecuador. I visited Ambato, Riobamba, and Guano (Yes – it is bat poop but not here!) to celebrate. Ambato throws a HUGE festival called Frutas y Flores to show off their amazing fruits and flowers. There were flowers, cakes, and art expositions, parades, concerts, and tons of food.

We stayed at a hotel that was right in the middle of things so we were able to watch all sorts of fun from our hotel windows. We really lucked out! There was an amazing parade with floats made from fruits, flowers, and breads that carried the regions’ many pageant queens. The first float carried the queen of the festival which is a pretty big deal. Lasting well into the night was a fabulous salsa concert. It was so cool to watch the crowd dancing from above!

People go nuts at Carnavale and spray each other with cans of foam and water. This went on for the weekend while we were there. But it got really intense when we went to Riobamba and Guano to visit our WT friends. We wore clothes that we could afford to get wet and really dirty, armed ourselves with foam, hopped on the packed buses heading to Guano, and walked into a crazy situation. People were throwing flour, paint, water, eggs, foam, and anything else they could get their hands on. They were ruthless. No one was safe including children and old women. The guys in our group really got into it. Fernando had a ball playing with the local children. They ended up naming him “Señor Malo”!

The weekend was a blast and now it’s back to school and work! Gotta love Ecuador!

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