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Sunday, March 1, 2009

Margie & Luke Race Through Romania

This week's episode brings the racers to Bucharest, Romania. When their destination is announced, I'm confused. Margie echoes my thoughts exactly: "I thought Bucharest was in Hungary!"

Luke is shown interviewing that he doesn't want to rely on his mom for all his communication on the race. He wants to know for himself what the other teams are thinking. Later the cheerleaders Jaime and Cara tell the camera that some people might be put off by Luke's deafness but they enjoy communicating with him. One of them is shown fingerspelling a word to him and writing notes on a pad of paper.

The first task of this leg of the race is to get in touch with one's inner Nadia. For this roadblock inspired by Nadia Comaneci, one team member is required to don a leotard and obtain instruction on the balance beam, parallel bars, and a floor routine. When Margie asks Luke if he wants to do it, he emphatically states, "I'm not wearing that girl's leotard." (CBS uses his comment as the title of tonight's episode.) Margie takes the road block and does a great job. She even looks good in her leotard!

As team after team completes the task with ease, I'm thinking that the judges for this task seem pretty lenient compared to some judges from past races. But then Tammy (of brother/sister team Victor & Tammy) takes her turn. She struggles throughout the task having to try again and again to win her judges' approval. Little sister Tammy is fit and trim so that is not the problem. No, she struggles because she is mentally distracted by her team's difficulty in getting to Bucharest. As team number one from last week, she and Victor had secured the first flight out of Munich. Unfortunately for them, their plane had mechanical problems and had to return to the airport. They got on the next flight out with several other teams.

Brad & Victoria

Their problems were not as bad as Brad's and Victoria's (the older husband/wife team) airport fiasco. Booked on the last flight leaving Munich with some of the other teams, they take a chance by booking an alternative flight that arrives earlier. Missing a tight connection in Amsterdam strands them at the airport until morning. As teams have learned before on the race, sometimes it's safer to stay with the pack.

Once teams receive their clue from their gynastics judge, they are directed to the next stop on the race Brasov, Transylvania. Cool! There they have a Detour choice of two tasks: Gypsy Moves or Vampire Remains. Gypsy Moves involves locating a gypsy settlement, packing up a gypsy family's belongings on a cart, and transporting them on the horsedrawn cart to another gypsy camp where everything is unloaded. Kris & Amanda (photogenic dating couple) are first to arrive and have no trouble with the task. Until it's time to leave and they can't locate Kris' fannypack with their money and passports. Yikes! Not another Toni and Dallas scenario! No, all's well here when the fannypack is recovered. Phew.

Kris and Amanda's delay while searching for their lost items allows father/son team Mel & Mike who surprisingly also chose the gypsy moves task (doesn't Mel have a groin injury?) to forge ahead. This week the father and son are first to the pit stop winning a trip to Costa Rica.

Meanwhile Margie & Luke choose Vampire Remains along with the cheerleaders, Tammy & Victor, and the flight attendants. This task involves following a marked path, locating a coffin, dragging it down a hill, unlocking it, and opening it to obtain wooden blocks inside. These blocks must then be impaled on a stake. One of the blocks contains a red/yellow flag which can then be exchanged for a clue from the watching "vampire". I would definitely have chosen this option!!! Margie & Luke breeze through this task and offer their closest allies, the cheerleaders, some advice.

Tammy & Victor

Unfortunately for Victor & Tammy, this task is not so simple. They are misled at the very first step when Victor spots some red and white paint markings on trees and declares they show the way to the coffins. Tammy points out that markings on previous races have always been in the form of red and yellow arrows but Victor doesn't listen. They walk on and on climbing up and up even though the airline flight attendants who were just behind them never make an appearance. Tammy questions Victor repeatedly but he insists that he's right. Meanwhile all the other teams except for Brad and Victoria have checked in at the pit stop. Luke & Margie have placed fourth again.

Eventually Victor and Tammy return to their starting point where Victor notices the arrow pointing to the correct path. Their troubles continue when they lose their key to the coffin while dragging it down the hillside. Their persistence pays off when Victor recovers the key in the grass. Where are Brad and Victoria? Do they have any hope of catching up? No, their choice at the airport is fatal and they are eliminated from the race. I thought they were a team that would stay around much longer. I would not count Victor and Tammy out even though they are at the bottom of the pack. Teams have gone from first to last in previous races and moved back up in the standings on the next leg.

The preview for next week's episode shows Luke having a frustrating time solving a code. I wonder how that dilemma will be resolved. We know you're smart, Luke. You can do it. Yes, you can! Go, Luke & Margie, go!


Valhallian said...

Ya must be thinking of Budapest if you're thinking Hungary.

SpeakUp Librarian said...

Yes, you're right, Valhallian. I was thinking of Budapest. Thanks for your comment - it clears up my confusion.

jelly said...

Good show once again.

I thought Tammy/Victor were going to be the last team for sure! They annoy me for some reason. Anyway, thanks for the recap, I enjoy reading them.

SpeakUp Librarian said...

It's a shame to see Brad & Victoria leave the race so early. I thought it was inspiring that Victoria took the gymnastics challenge since I read on the CBS website that she has had difficulty with her hips, legs, and feet. I would have liked to have seen more of that couple.

Deb Ann and Hannah said...

I'm so glad I got a chance to read your blog since we stayed in Denver all day along and until nine in the night when we got home. I had no chance to watch it but am so glad to have the chance to read your blog! I knew that you'd write about was the first blog I opened today! :)

SpeakUp Librarian said...

Glad to be able to recap it for you, Deb Ann!