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Freelance entertainment writer, martial arts instructor, and mother of two.

The Amazing Race, December 23rd – Prego, Not Just a Spaghetti Sauce


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At the point the airfield opens up, the two teams already there reach the clue box and find a Roadblock. One member from each team must soar through the skies over Tuscany in an “Ultralight.” They need to scan the countryside below and search for the name of the next destination, Vinci. Once they’re brought down, they tell the flight instructor the name, and if they’re right, they get the next clue. There’s a thirty minute limit per each flight, and if they reach the limit, they need to land for refueling before going up and searching again.

There is also a Fast Forward on the race. They need to go to the local Fabio studio to take part in a local seafaring tradition. Once there they find out they need to get a permanent FF tattoo. FF, that would be, for Fast Forward. Nate doesn’t want to do it, but Jen does. Both TK and Nate will be doing the Roadblock. Nate feels like a bird once he’s up in the air, and TK finds it completely thrilling. Ron and Christina show up, running for the clue box. They decide to skip the Fast Forward. Nick and Don decide to try it, though, upsetting Jen. She says they have won no legs so far. Ron shouts at Christina about looking for the numbers and Rachel says she hasn’t heard him yell at her yet, but she has no respect for it. Who would?

Vyxsin is having a major breakdown, driving, saying she hasn’t slept for the past thirty hours. Kynt has her pull over so he can give the stick shift a try. Ron finally finds the numbers and makes a big embarrassing deal about it. Nate finds the clue in the air and asks to be taken down. He gets the right answer, and Nate and Jen get a clue to drive to the Leonardo Da Vinci birthplace. They continue to argue about the Fast Forward as they leave. TK’s thirty minutes expires, and he must land for refueling, as Christina takes off to search in the air, with Ron on the ground saying if he was doing it, he might have peed his pants. Good thing Hendekea was eliminated for this, as you know she has that party going on in her pants.

Nick and Grandpa Don reach the Fabio salon, and they are told they will need to get the FF tattoos. Don isn’t so sure, saying he never thought he’d be doing that at his age. He eventually relents to “the permanent marking.” Nate and Jen are stopping to ask for directions, and Ron is waiting for Christina. She finds the clue while TK continues to search yet again. Grandpa Don is beginning to wish he’d gotten the Fast Forward to shave his head, as this is forever.

Nate and Jen stop at a map to look for the birthplace, and Rachel sees Christina landing with her thumbs up. She and her father take off for the Da Vinci birthplace, and while we almost forgot about them, or at least I did, The Goth Couple are still driving, and she feels comforted that they’re getting closer with each passing hour. The tattoos finished, Nick and Grandpa Don are allowed to proceed straight to the pit stop, The Boboli Gardens.

Nate and Jen finally reach Da Vinci’s birthplace walking and decide they could have driven there. They find a Detour – Invention or Tradition. In Invention, the teams will make their way to a courtyard and choose a replica of a crane device designed by Da Vinci. They’ll assemble it and use it to lift one large stone a foot off the ground, then put a mirror underneath to read the clue. In Tradition, the teams will learn a traditional flag routine. Doing it correctly, they’ll receive a flag with the name of their next destination. Hopefully, Jen won’t embarrass the dancing world again.

Ron and Christina are just 6 km away from Vinci. TK lands after thirty minutes again, still not finding the clue. The Goth Couple arrive, and can’t believe TK and Rachel are still there. They talk about doing the Fast Forward, but figure someone else already did it, not wanting to waste the time.

It’s someone resembling the Ricola man welcoming Nick and Grandpa Don to the pit stop. They are the winners of this leg and have won a trip to Cancun. Phil notes their tattoos, and Nick admits he would have been disappointed to not come in first place after getting the tattoo. Don is fully wrapped up in the race, saying the longer they stick around, the better their odds become for winning. Boy, I wonder if it took him the whole time getting the tattoo to find that out.

Nate and Jen are watching the flag routine, learning it. He calls her the ultimate competitor, getting it easily, while he struggles. Ron and Christina reach the area while TK still can’t find the clue. He calls it the most heartbreaking thing he’s ever done. Vyxsin finds the clue on the first try. Ron wants to do the Tradition, thinking the other will be too tough. Nate and Jen finally hear “Si,” and are allowed to proceed to the pit stop . She feels good that he listened to her, allowing them to work together as a team.

Ron and Christina run up to ask to be taught the routine. TK is searching in the air yet again, this time by the river, and finally finds the clue. Nate and Jen arrive on the mat in second place, while Ron and Christina work on the flag routine. They perform it, but are told, “No.” The Goth Couple work their way towards the birthplace of Da Vance happy to not be in last place anymore. Ron and Christina finally pass the Detour and exclaim “Graci.”


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