Don't Ruin the
From one corner of the Orient to another,
the Racers went from remote Japan to remote China. En route, they rode
saddled yaks across a waterfall, worked out the Chinese Zodiac, hammered
out candy and paraded around with a large horn. Margie & Luke (Team Hear
My Song!) arrived at the PIT STOP in first and won a trip...but, just
like the first PIT STOP, this was another "gas-and-go", meaning they
still had to Race. The only two who haven't "checked-in-and-out" yet are
Zev & Justin (Team Puzzle Pieces) - still parading with their horn lost
in Old Town Lijiang - and Kent & Vyxsin (Team Dating Goths) - who, after
MANY, MANY trials and tribulations, are trying to get back their fanny
pack with all their important stuff in it. Who will finish the Leg in
8th? Who will be last? Will they be eliminated? Or will they live to
Race another Leg? Let's find out, shall we
PIT STOP #4
OVERLOOKING OLD TOWN LIJIANG, PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF CHINA
"Zev & Justin," says Phil on the portico
of a beautiful tower, "you are the eighth team to arrive."
They seem relieved that Kent & Vyxsin
didn't (somehow) beat them there. That relief is short-lived, however,
as they are handed the next clue by Phil. Ayup, another "gas-and-go" PIT
STOP. And the clue they get (as did the seven teams before them) is
TRAVEL TO KUNMING,
Travel by train nearly 400 back
to the city of Kunming, China (where your flight from Tokyo dropped
you off). Then travel to Dounan Flower Market and search for your
WARNING: A DOUBLE U-TURN will
appear at some point of this Leg of the Race.
Oh, great...you all know
what THAT means:
A U-TURN forces a team to do BOTH
parts of a DETOUR instead of one or the other. Teams may be U-TURNed
more than once during a Race, but may only UTILIZE a U-TURN once. A
team using a U-TURN must place two pictures up: one for the team
they are U-TURNing, and their own so that said team knows who U-TURNed
This will be a DOUBLE U-TURN
(introduced in the last Race), meaning two different teams can
U-TURN two OTHER teams at the same DETOUR.
Phil tells them to hurry
up...although it's hardly necessary right now because...
OUTSIDE OF LIJIANG, CHINA
...Team Dating Goths finally
arrive BACK at the site of their ROADBLOCK and search for the fanny pack
they left in the gondola. Their only hope is that it was turned in at
the top of the mountain. Sure enough, at the top, the lost and found
department hands them their pack, mush to their relief. .
1201 LOCAL TIME
Meanwhile, Team Hear My Song
arrive at the train station they had arrived at mere hours before from
Kunming. They ask about tickets TO Kunming...and they find that the
earliest one doesn't leave until around 7pm. Aaaaaaaand the Alternate
Great Equalizer strikes again! And here come the other teams to claim
THEIR seats: Jet & Cord (Team Cowboy Bebop), Gary & Mallory (Team
KY/Dad), Ron & Christina (Team Who's Your Daddy?), Kisha & Jen (Team
Cardinal Sisters),"Flight Time" & "Big Easy (aka Nate & Herb, Team
Trotters), Jaime & Cara (Team Hollaback Girls) and Team Puzzle Pieces
bringing up the rear.
Back in Old Town, Kent &
Vyxsin find this old clue:
WHAT'S YOUR SIGN?
The prayer wheel before you as
the twelve signs of the Chinese Zodiac upon in. Unlike the Western
Zodiac, your sign of the Chinese Zodiac is based on the YEAR you
were born, not the month. You each must figure out which sign is
yours, write a wish on a piece of paper and insert it into the slot
above your sign, announcing the sign as you do. If you are correct,
the spotter nearby will give you your next clue.
They figure out they're
Rabbit and Horse respectively, put in their prayers (which hopefully
include NOT being eliminated) and are handed THIS clue:
HAMMER or HORN?
HAMMER: Head for the
confectioners. The head confectioner will pour hot molten candy onto
a high stump. You must them pulverize the candy using long-handled
wooden hammers, the traditional way to do it in Old Town. When you
finish making it flat and cutting it into rectangular pieces. The
confectioner will give you your next clue.
HORN: Head to Namun Square.
There, you must take up a long, cumbersome horn and lead a
procession of Nakhi dancers to Wenchang Palace, where a greeter will
hand you your next clue.
They choose HAMMER...because
Vyxsin does NOT want to navigate anymore this leg. They get to the
confectioners, pulverize the molten candy, cut it into a square and
package it. The head confectioner gives THIS clue to them:
MAKE YOUR WAY TO
THE NEXT PIT STOP!
Travel by foot to the center of
Lijiang city, up Lion Hill and to the Eternal Tower, the PIT STOP
for this Leg of the Race.
WARNING! The last team to
check-in MAY BE ELIMINATED!
They're fairly sure this is
the end. They arrive in front of Phil who tell them what they already
know: they're last to arrive. The GOOD news is this was another
Non-Elimination Leg (NEL, as I call it) and they're still Racing now.
But there IS some BAD news. Since they took an alternate flight from
Tokyo to Kunming instead of the MANDATORY flight, and since said
alternate was NOT on the predetermined list of flights given, they must
serve a 30-minute penalty at the next PIT STOP before being checked in.
For now, though, they're told to hoof it and try to catch up. First
thing they decide: NOT to tell any other teams about their
penalty...because they would be easy pickings for a U-TURN. They take a
cab to the train station.
While waiting on the Goths,
Teams Cowboy Bebop, Trotters and Cardinal Sisters decide to have a
3-on-3 match-up while they wait for the train. The other teams cheer for
either Jet/Flight/Kisha or Cord/Big Easy/Jen. And Team Hollaback
Girls...duh, they did the cheerleading. When Zev & Justin arrived during
the game, they say that Kent & Vyxsin were right behind them...but Team
Trotters don't want to hear that to "ruin" their b-ball de-stressing.
But, sure enough, Team Dating Goths show up and are happy to be back in
it after a HORRIBLE Leg. They tell their sob story to the other team
(though they claim it was a car breakdown in Japan, not bad navigating,
that made them miss their flight). The others asked about a
penalty...but the Goths didn't give a straight answer. As Cord says,
this story is "to be continued..."
All out! It's early morning
in the city at the end of the Burma Road and eighteen Americans pile out
to head for the flower market. They start to take cabs and Ron &
Christina again use the Chinese language to get their cabbie to haul.
Everyone seems on edge about the DOUBLE U-TURN fast approaching.
DOUNAN FLOWER MARKET
As teams tell their cabbies
to wait, they rush into a market covered in flowers of every make and
color. It's Kisha & Jen who arrive at the clue box first and find this:
FIND THE GOLDEN
ARCHES AND FIND YOUR NEXT CLUE!
Travel by taxi to the Golden
Horse & Jade Cock Memorial Arches. Search the grounds for your next
As they leave, Zev & Justin,
Ron & Christina, and Margie & Luke get their clues. The others arrive
later and snag THEIR clues...except for Nate & Herb whom, despite being
tall, get lost in the maze of buildings. As they search, Jet & Cord make
off with their cab...so, when they emerge with their clue, they're
stranded! Thankfully, they find another one fairly quickly and follow
the others to:
In between large arches
marked with a horse and a co...rooster, the teams let out, see some tai
chi masters and find their clue. Team Who's Your Daddy arrive first,
though Team Puzzle Pieces are right behind. And they get:
HONOR THE PAST or
EMBRACE THE FUTURE?
HONOR THE PAST: Go to a local
Tibetan playhouse and watch a traditional Tibetan procession. PAY
ATTENTION TO THE ACTORS! Once you've seen the procession enough, go
into a booth and place costumes on 15 dolls, placing them in the
order they appeared in the procession. YOU MUST NOT TAKE NOTES
DURING THIS TASK! When you have them arranged correctly, the judge
will hand you your next clue.
EMBRACE THE FUTURE: Head to a
nearby Great Wall of China Building where a delivery truck is
waiting. You must offload an entire solar water heating panel, bring
it to the top of the building and properly install it on the roof.
Once the panel is properly installed and inspected, the supervisor
will hand you your next clue.
The two teams decide to
HONOR THE PAST and head off in their cabs. The other teams choices: Team
Cardinal Sisters choose to HONOR THE PAST, everyone else will EMBRACE
(NOTE: Jet joked that a
nearby McDonalds(tm) were the "Golden Arches"...and I'm glad THEY made
that joke and not me! Cost them some time, though.)
Ron & Christina and Zev &
Justin both arrive at the playhouse and don Tibetan outfits before
entering the theater-proper. Fifteen people parade in a snakelike
pattern across the small stage while two others sing. Both teams split
the load: one teammate remembers the first seven players' colors, on
takes the other eight. After the performance, the team retire to their
separate booths and start playing with dolls. The Chinese-Americans seem
to being doing well. The two men...not so much. As they work, Kisha &
Jen show up and start to watch..
At the building, Margie &
Luke emerge from they cab and don white construction helmets. The boxes
the panel tubes are in...fairly heavy. Not TOO much of a problem for
Luke...but Margie is lagging behind. Eventually, they get it hauled up
and start to unpack the tubes. Installation seems to be a breeze.
Back at the theater, Zev &
Justin get a shake of the head from the judge, so they run back to see
the procession again...and see that they mixed two of them up. As Ron &
Christina head back in after being denied, the two friends move the
two...and get the nod! They're the first to leave the DETOUR! And their
Make your way to the place
pictured in the enclosed photo. There your next clue awaits.
(The photo is that of the Chinese
Minority Heritage Center.)
CAUTION! DOUBLE U-TURN AHEAD!
As they leave, Kisha & Jen
ask for a ruling...and THEY get it on the first shot! They leave and the
two teams show the photo to their cabbies and ask them to take them
there. Ron & Christina finally get it right and leave in third. They
figure it out from THEIR cabbie, so they all decide to follow the
Chinese driver (and passengers).
At the building, Team
Trotters get lost and Team Hollaback Girls arrive and heft up the heavy
boxes...which makes Luke freak out seeing his "Race girlfriends"
catching up. Team Dating Goths also arrives, heaving up the boxes (with
Vyxsin saying it "isn't rocket science). Margie & Luke are fourth out of
the DETOUR and heading for the 2xU-T, passing the Goths en route. Team
Cowboy Bebop then arrive and start on it, passing the complaining Kent &
Vyxsin on the way. Nate & Herb finally find the place and heft up the
boxes...each one taking one over their shoulders. As the Dating Goths
get their last boxes up, Jaime & Cara depart the DETOUR in 5th. More
Goth-like bitching from Vyxsin and a quick set of hands gets Jet & Cord
a 6th place exit.
At PAST, Gary & Mallory
arrive and watch the performance. Gary tries to go by costume and not
necessarily the colors. Mallory says she has it, though...so they rush
back into their booth and rearrange the dolls.
The three taxied teams stop
at near the Kunming Cultural Center...and none of them can find the clue
box. A passerby is shown the picture and corrects them: that's the
Yunnan Province Cultural Center that they're headed to. OK, they're
freaking. The cabbie hauls to...
YUNNAN PROVINCE CULTURAL CENTER
Team Hear My Song arrives at
the DOUBLE U-TURN first. But...they decline to U-TURN anyone. Instead
they go to THIS clue:
MAKE YOUR WAY TO
THE STONE FOREST!
Travel by taxi to the Shilin
Stone Forest, about 75 miles outside of Kunming. Once there, follow
the marked path to your next clue.
Kent & Vyxsin finish the
paneling and leave the DETOUR in 7th. Back at the theater, Team KY/Dad
get the nod for their doll diorama and leave in 8th. As the sun rises
and three more FUTURE teams arrive at the U-TURN, Team Trotters finish
the DETOUR in last.
Jet & Cord opt out of the
U-TURN and head for the Stone Forest in 2nd. They give Kent & Vyxsin
directions to the spot, and Jamie & Cara are right on their tails.
Dating Goths decide to use their U-TURN...:
JAIME & CARA
(courtesy of Kent & Vyxsin)
Right in FRONT of them! Oh,
SNAP! Now...the Rules of the Race state that Jaime & Cara CAN utilize
THEIR U-TURN before working on their own. So...they do:
"FLIGHT TIME" & "BIG EASY"
(courtesy of Jaime & Cara)
Team Cowboy Bebop and Team
Dating Goths look for a cabbie who knows where they're going while other
teams show up. Said teams find both U-TURNs set, breathe a heavy sigh of
relief and get their clue: Zev & Justin in 4th, Gary & Mallory in 5th,
Kisha & Jen in 6th, Ron & Christina in 7th. Team Cardinal Sisters get a
cabbie who knows the way, and everyone else essentially says, "Follow
that car" to their OWN drivers. Oh, and Margie & Luke needed to call a
translator to tell THEIR cabbie where to go. But Kisha & Jen are tricky
girls; they lose the other teams at an intersection.
Team Hollaback Girls arrive
at the theater and watch the cavalcade, hoping to get it right the first
time. As they struggle, Team Trotters learn the bad news that THEY'VE
been U-TURNed. So THEY head for the theater...but not before Jaime &
Cara leave their U-TURN in 8th, indeed getting it right on the first
try. They return to the U-TURN and get the Stone Forest clue. Nate &
Herb go by the hats on the players' heads...and they knock it
out...though still in last. Jaime & Cara get deja vu again: their cabbie
in Hawai'i stopped for gas on the final Leg in AR16 and now, while
they're in next-to-last, their cabbie stops for gas again.
SHILIN STONE FOREST
Team Cardinal Sisters arrive
at the Stone Forest and head up the path:
WHO'S READY FOR A
TASK 65 MILLION YEARS IN THE MAKING?
Here in Yunnan Province,
paleontologists have unearthed the oldest and largest dinosaur
fossils in China. One team member will pay homage to those
scientists in a unique way. Head for a marked "dig site" and collect
pieces of an entire Dilophosaurus skeleton. Then, using the one
diagram on the grounds as reference, you must piece together the
pieces to make a complete, free-standing Dilophosaurus skeleton. A
paleontologist will watch your progress; if s/he feels the joints
you piece together are unsafe, s/he will stop you and make you do it
right. When you've assembled it correctly, the paleontologist will
hand you your next clue.
(Uh, CBS? We have
NBC/Universal on Line 1 for you...something about "Jurassic Park" and
Kisha decides to build the 'saur
and they take the shuttle to the "dig site". Team Who's Your Daddy and
Team Hear My Song both arrive at the same time. The ladies decide to
construct. All three start to build, with Kisha drawing a diagram OF the
diagram and Ron telling Christina to "work hard" and "take it slow" in
Chinese. Next up are Team Dating Goths, who lets Kent do the task.
Vyxsin then lets the pink-and-black cat out of the bag about their
30-minute penalty, hence why they used their U-TURN. Ron's not too happy
about that. Jet & Cord are next to the ROADBLOCK and Jet calls it.
While the two U-TURNed teams
race in cabs for the forest, the other three teams are lost. Zev shows
his cabbie a pebble while yelling "STONE" and knocks on a nearby tree
yelling "FOREST". The cabbie says he's got it...but no guarantees.
At the dig site, Kisha is
the first to get a "not safe" from the palaeo...the scientist. "Big
Easy" is selected for Team Trotters and Jaime for Team Hollaback Girls.
Christina is HAMMERING the joints in place as things start getting
hectic. And it's MORE hectic when Justin and Gary show up. But, when
Team KY/Dad show up and see they're in dead last, it's time to bring out
the ace in the hole:
- GARY & MALLORY
The Express Pass will allow one
team the opportunity to bypass ANY task. If you cannot or will not
perform a task, simply hand the presiding local your Express Pass,
and he or she will give you the next clue, no questions asked!
You may only use the Express Pass
ONCE, so you must determine when it is in your best interests to use
Well, this seems like the best time to go
from worst to first so...they cash it in. As such, they bypass this
ROADBLOCK and get this clue automatically:
MAKE YOUR WAY TO
THE NEXT PIT STOP!
Head back into Kunming and find
Green Lake Park, the PIT STOP for this Leg of the Race.
WARNING! The last team to
check-in MAY BE ELIMINATED!
And away they split, much to
the chagrin of the eight other teams. Kent asks the scientist for a
ruling, but he gets a negative. Margie's doing this for her 4-year-old
grandson Bryce, a huge dino-fan. Jet asks for a ruling...and he has it
RIGHT! He and Cord leave in 2nd. "Flight Time" wants a explanation for
the U-TURN and seems OK with it once it's explained that it wasn't out
of malice. Back at the parking lot, Jet & Cord pass Gary & Mallory and
get into their cab first, burning rubber back to town. Team KY/Dad's cab
is long gone so they get another one to make tracks.
Justin is having labor pains
trying to get a hip bone unconnected to the...thigh bones as it was
marked unsafe. Margie is third out of the ROADBLOCK and she and her son
GREEN LAKE PARK
It's a footrace between the
father/daughter and the cow-bros through the park. After much huffing
and puffing, they both find Phil standing by what I'm guessing is "Green
Lake" with a greeter. One team scrambles to the mat and Phil says the
"Jet & Cord, I am very
pleased to tell you that you are Team #1!"
And the reward? Five
thousand American dollars EACH!
Gary & Mallory seem all
right with being Team #2, despite using their EXPRESS PASS.
Back at the dig site, there
are grunts and groans and several "no"s from the crowd. And Kent...falls
off his ladder and onto his side like a pro wrestler. Still, LIKE a pro
wrestler, he gets up none the worse and works on it. One more check of
the diagram tells him where he went wrong; the hip bone is upside down.
Jaime's getting tired...and frustrated. Team Hear My Song is Team #3
(though Phil still screws up the ASL; the middle three fingers up is SIX
while the thumb, index and middle fingers up is THREE). Kisha finally
gets it right and she and Jen leave the ROADBLOCK fourth. Kent rebuilds
and gets the nod, he and Vyxsin splitting fifth...and hoping that it
takes at least one other team more than a half-hour longer to finish.
They pass Team Cardinal Sisters, who lost their cab.
"Big Easy" Nate finishes his
dino (which is only a few feet taller than he is) with a shout as he and
Herb scram in 6th. Jaime is getting more and more fatigued. Team Dating
Goths are the fourth time to arrive at the PIT STOP...BUT there's that
half-hour penalty they spoke of back in Lijiang. So they wait...and
watch Kisha & Jen arrive. They're the fifth team to arrive.
HOWEVER,...since the Goths are chillin', they're actually Team #4. As
Team Trotters enter the park, Phil calls for Kent & Vyxsin, who SCRAMBLE
to the mat to be checked in as Team #5. The sigh of relief could be
heard in Mongolia, I'm sure. The b-ballers are Team #6 again. "DOUBLE
U-TURN that, baby," was the victory shout.
Three teams are left to
struggle with their dinos. All the slow and steady effort worked out for
Christina as she gets the nod and she and her daddy leave in 7th. Team
Puzzle Pieces asks for a ruling...but Justin's shut down. Jaime asks
likewise...but SHE's denied...and she's near the breaking point. Justin
moves a few things around...and he gets the clue! As they leave, Jaime
knows what's wrong...but cannot see herself taking the whole skeleton
apart just to flip the hip bone. Ron & Christina are Zev & Justin arrive
at the same time and are teams #7 and #8 respectively.
Despite her pain and
fatigue, Jaime follows through on dismantling and reassembling the
Dilophosaurus. Cara is proud of her fellow cheerleader as they head for
the park. Phil gives them the double bad news: they're last and they're
out. Though exhausted, the team was not going to give up. Was the second
chance worth it? Certainly.
AFTER LEG 5: OLD
TOWN LIJIANG, CHINA to KUNMING, CHINA
2) Jet & Cord (+1) -
3) Gary & Mallory (+1) - Express Pass (USED)
1) Margie & Luke (-2) - Aruba
5) Kisha & Jen (+1)
9) Kent & Vyxsin (+4)
6) "Flight Time" & "Big Easy" (EVEN)
4) Ron & Christina (+3)
8) Zev & Justin (EVEN) - Cancun, Costa Rica
ELIMINATED) Jaime & Cara (-2)
To see this episode in its
entirety, or to apply to be a contestant on "The Amazing Race", visit
the official website at