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Tuesday, March 14, 2006
 
The Amazing Race Recap

The teams travel to a zip line where they will have a ride above the trees. Survivor had this as a reward last season. Because there will be a wait until 7:00 AM, there is pretty good bunching here, as the hippies had a big lead; they departed at 4:48 and their closest competitors were at 5:01, with the next group at 5:18. The ride to the zip line takes about 40 minutes with the result that everybody leaving before 6:20 is effectively at the same restart.

The hippies still take the first ride down the zip line. Their next clue says Moscow. There's a race to the bus stop that will take them to Sao Paolo airport, where they can catch one of three buses. But this seems a needless diversion as all nine pairs end up on the same Lufthansa flight to Frankfurt and then to Moscow.

They visit a water sports facility, where we encounter tonight's roadblock. Most choose the least athletic member here because it simply requires jumping off a 10-meter platform into the water and then swimming down a few feet to get the next clue. In a bizarre bit, Michelle argues with hubby Lake that she doesn't want to do it because "What if they make me get naked"? Uh, lady, despite the later hour this season, I don't think CBS is quite ready for that!

Yolanda appears to be having trouble but she comes through. So do a couple others. But the real problem turns out to be the mother in the mother and daughter team. It turns out she doesn't know how to swim underwater, so the team loses precious time trying to get the clue.

The hippies leave this location in first as well. They visit a beautiful monastery where they find that the next task is a detour: teams must choose between scrubbing a trolley car or searching through nested Russian Dolls for a clue. Most teams choose the trolley car washing, but they miss one rather obvious fact; most taxi car drivers are unlikely to know where the trolley car yard is located, while they would know the theatre where the dolls are. Sure enough, the hippies and the old couple (who have vaulted all the way to second) start out looking for a trolley car and decide in midstream to find the theatre instead, losing precious time.

About this time, Team Pink discovers that they've left their money behind at the swimming center, and must double back. This gives the mother and daughter team, who have finally gotten their clue, encouragment to continue fighting.

As it works out, the Mother and Daughter and Team Pink are the first to find the trolley car yard and begin scrubbing, closely followed by the pinks. A couple others show up, while the remaining teams are cursing their luck as they go through 1500 dolls each of which contains about a dozen nested smaller dolls.

The frat boys (I think) are the first to find the clue in the dolls and they head off to Red Square and St. Basil's, followed quickly by Lake and Michelle. Who will be the first to the mat? As it works out, Eric and Jeremy arrive first, but there's something wrong. Phil is alone on the mat; where's the native to say "Welcome to Moscow"?

The answer of course is that the leg isn't over; they're still racing.

Viking Pundit seems to be down right now.--Update: Eric emailed me to say that blogger appears to have lost his blog. Let's all say a little prayer that they "find" it again.

Later Update: Phil Keoghan (host of the show) has his own blog here.
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