Representing the Philippines, Vincent Jarina only reached the semi-finals in Mister Ocean 2017 in Taiwan in November and did not make it to the finals. But he went home with life-changing memories and a compliment from Ronald Mayorga Peixoto, who represented Peru.
Despite the language barrier, Peixoto managed to make friends with the non-Latino candidates. One of them was Jarina.
“El idioma nunca fue un obstáculo cuando sientes que los demás quieren ser amigo tuyo,” (Language was never an obstacle when you feel that others want to be your friend) Peixoto said in a statement exclusively obtained by Conan Daily. “Sólo no hubo oportunidad de poder hablar con todos porque fuimos muchos candidatos.” (There was just no opportunity to talk to everyone because there were many candidates.)
Peixoto was Mister Ocean 2017 fourth runner-up and the winner of the Best Tuxedo award. He and the 12 other Latino candidates of the competition were very close and supportive of each other.
But this did not mean that the Latinos did not make friends with the non-Latinos during the competition. Peixoto said during the competition, he met Filipinos with whom he had many friends in common.
Aside from Jarina, there were several other Filipinos who were in Taiwan for the Mister Ocean 2017 competition including photographer Jonas Yu. According to Peixoto, Jarina and Yu were always very friendly.
Among the 36 non-Latino Mister Ocean 2017 candidates, Peixoto said it was Mister Latvia Ivo Lesnieks who talked a lot. The Peruvian candidate said he and Mister Paraguay Jose Felix Morilla used to call Lesnieks crazy.
Mister Cote d’Ivoire Paul-abraham Kobieni was always very funny while Mister Romania Geany-Daniel Zamfir often talked about training, Peixoto recalled. According to the candidate from Peru, Mister San Marino Giovanni Bonanno was always very kind and there were some days when he joined the Latinos.