Monday, March 7, 2011

The Amazing Race Unfinished Business: Mel & Mike Eliminated With Zev & Justin 1st Again

Japan is not one of my favorite countries that The Amazing Race visits. I really don't know why I don't react to Japan thinking that sure looks like a fun place to visit.

I did like the vending machine rental car dispenser. I'd never seen anything like that before.

Last week ended at the Broken Hill Pit Stop. This week we learned from that Pit Stop the teams boarded a train back to Sydney.

Then it was 5,000 miles to Tokyo. Way too much time spent ticket hunting to find two flights. One of the flights arrived 15 minutes earlier, but involved a stop in Hong Kong. Much foretelling disaster verbiage, as teams assessed the risk of not taking the direct flight option.

The Globetrotters thought they were returning a favor to Zev & Justin when they gave them the last two tickets on the 15 minutes earlier flight that routed through Hong Kong. So, it was the Globetrotters, Gary & Mallory, Kisha & Jen, Jet & Cord and Ron & Christina on the direct flight.

All the others were on the plane to Hong Kong, where upon landing they learned there was an engine problem which would delay them, making them 90 minutes late.

After getting their cars out of the vending machine teams had to drive to the city of Kamakura and find Tsurugaoka Hachimangu and go to the Yabusame Dojo. I'm glad I am fluent in Japanese so I can remember these names.

Ron & Christina were the first team to get to Tsurugaoka Hachimangu where they found a Roadblock. It involved learning some Samurai warrior rituals and then hitting a piece of wood with an arrow, shot from a bow, while spinning on a wooden horse.

This was not a fun Roadblock to watch. Jen was the only one who seemed to have an easy time of it.

The clue from the Roadblock sent them on some more driving drama, looking for something called the Kintaro statue by the Daiyuzan Railway station. The clue at the Kintaro statue was a Detour. Prayer of Purity or Frog of Luck.

Everyone chose the Frog except for the Globetrotters and Ron & Christina.

In Prayer of Purity it was another learn a ritual deal. Then stand under an icy waterfall of snow melt from Mount Fuji for a minute. The most interesting part was the Globetrotters moving Christina's fanny pack, which caused much upset, til Ron found it in the changing room. When Ron & Christina met Phil at the Pit Stop they whined about the Globetrotter Fanny Packing. So, Phil gave the Globetrotters a 30 minute penalty, which moved Ron & Christina from 4th to 3rd and knocked Flight Time & Big Easy from 3rd to 5th.

In Frog of Luck teams had to take off all their clothes and put on what looked like oversized diapers. Then search a big muddy pit for a frog while Japanese pelted them with mud. Apparently this is a fun activity in Japan. It seemed sort of disgusting to me and was not all that fun to watch.

Jaime & Cara had been way behind all day long. At one point they were delayed by a minor accident where someone's rear view mirror was touched. The police were called. When Jamie & Cara finally made it to the mud they thought they were doomed, because no one else was still looking for a muddy frog.

But, they did not know that Mel & Mike had bailed due to Mike getting worried that the freezing temperature was too much for his 70 year old dad. Jaime & Cara quickly found the frog and rushed right by Mel & Mike who were warming up in a van, not seeing them.

So, when Jaime & Cara stepped on the mat they were very surprised to hear Phil tell them they were Team #9.

Soon thereafter Mel & Mike arrived to be told they'd been eliminated from the race.

Next week they race to China. I always enjoy The Amazing Race in China. Always makes me want to visit China. Unlike Japan.

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