Sunday, April 12, 2009

Amazing Race update – Bangkok 5

Well, it's back to work after a two-week hiatus. There are five teams remaining on the Race and they're staying in Thailand, traveling from Phuket to Bangkok. Let me take this moment to note that "Bangkok 8" is a great piece of fiction if you're ever looking to understand Thai/Buddhist culture.

Everybody's on the same flight and then they all arrive at the Roadblock where one team member must attach a propeller to a traditional Thai boat. It's really not that hard putting a nut on a bolt and Team Say What? finishes first. But now everybody has to negotiate the confusing river system and find a particular pier with the next clue. Team Ginger goes back to their taxi for their packs, which may or may not be the right thing to do, depending on whether the boats return to the original dock. Victor of Team Esquire can't figure out "righty tighty." Team Sistahs leave the dock but not only do they leave behind their backpacks, they leave their fanny pack with their passports.

Margie & Luke arrive first at the next clue which is a Detour: Broken Teeth or Broken Record. Teams may either find dentures for five toothless Thais or sing karaoke in the back of a "party taxi" as it drives through crowded Bangkok streets. The teams who had left behind their bags are yelling at each other; Mike & Mark in particular can't agree on whether to do the Detour first or get their bags. Everybody chooses the party taxis except Team Say What since deaf Luke can't sing very well. They finish first and head to the Pit Stop.

Team Sistahs finish their Detour next but they don't have their bags, passports or, in Kisha's case, shoes. They convince a taxi driver to take them to the Pit Stop for free but I don't see how they can continue the Race without their passports. In a previous Race, I distinctly remember (found the link!) that a team that left their shoes behind had to buy new ones in the airport on the next leg. In other words, when you "check in" at the Pit Stop, you can't go back for your stuff. Sure enough, Phil tells Kisha & Jen that they cannot be checked in without their passports. On the flip side, Team Mighty Mites went back for their bags but haven't completed the Detour yet.

It's hard to tell who's going to make it to Phil. But Team Mighty Mites completes their Detour and heads to the mat ahead of Team Sistahs. However, they are announced as "the fourth team to arrive" and not "Team #4" which is always bad news. It turns out that in their desperation to pay taxi drivers, Michael & Mark traded stuff from their backpacks and even handed over a wristwatch. This is explicitly against Race rules and they must serve two two-hour penalties (four hours total) which essentially kills their chances for this leg. However, it's a non-elimination leg so they're still in the Race. But they still have to serve their time penalty and then face a Speed Bump on the next leg.

Final standings:

#1 – Team Say What? – Margie & Luke
#2 – Team Ginger – Jaime & Cara
#3 – Team Esquire – Tammy & Victor
#4 – Team Sistahs – Kisha & Jen
#5 – Team Mighty Mites – Michael & Mark

Next week – Tension at the mat.

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