Amazing Race

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Nice Rack

The Zurich train has stopped at a station, and the Flight Attendants have a seatmate who also happens to be traveling to Locarno, just like them. Funny thing: she's changing trains now. The Blondes decide to follow her, hoping to shave 13 minutes off their travel time. The other teams on the train notice their departure and wonder what's going on, but they're not about to take the chance of following them. And that's how Christie and Jodi reach the Locarno station first. Ladies and gentlemen, your very first "currently in first place" team. Looks like the flight attendant experience is paying off already.

Phil informs us that it's now time to hoof it to the Church of San Antonio. Shit, all the way to Texas? No, not really. There, a sign-in book has been made up to look like a Medieval illuminated manuscript, with the page broken down into three departure times the next morning: 7:15, 7:30, and 7:45. The priest waiting next to it will also hand them a rolled-up message when they arrive. The Flight Attendants get directions to the church, and follow a pair of older ladies as their guides. Funny thing about these two: instead of equipping themselves with the usual backpacks, they've opted for rolling suitcases. Well, I guess that's what they're used to. I wonder if they're also going to have trouble adapting to riding on airplanes while facing forward.

As the other train from Zurich arrives, the teams pile off it and Luke is literally dragging Margie by the hand down the platform. It's getting dark as they fan out looking for directions. But by now, Christie and Jodi have already found the right place. Before running over to sign in, they take a moment to kiss and hug their guides gratefully. Then it's off across the pebble-paved plaza, a surface that causes their suitcase wheels to make enough noise to bring the other teams running. As the priest watches, they sign in first and earn their 7:15 departure time. So far, so good. The message the priest handed them reads, "Follow the map to the campsite." Not so good.

Tammy and Victor arrive next, followed by Margie|Luke and Mark|Michael, who get the last 7:15 slot. Next to arrive are Brad|Victoria, who will leave the next morning at 7:30, along with Jaime and Cara, the cheerleaders. "We beat Air France!" Victor celebrates, high-fiving his sister. From what little I've heard about Air France, that isn't necessarily a huge accomplishment.

That first train bearing the Air France passengers from Milan arrives, and with little transition, we see the four teams wandering the Locarno streets at night. Steve is already giving Linda a hard time, because it turns out she's not too fast on her feet. That seems like it might have been something worth exploring before signing up to be in a RACE. Mel and Mike are first of the Milan cohort to arrive at the church, securing that last 7:30 slot for themselves. Next are Kisha and Jen, who are the first in the last group, leaving at 7:45. That's the kind of thing that Andrew and Dan would have considered a major victory. Then come Amanda and Kris, while Steve is still exhorting Linda to hurry up already. She's completely out of breath and slowing them to a walk. "Damn, Linda. We're last at everything we do," he bitches at her after they sign in for the tenth of eleven slots. Last at counting, too, apparently.

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Amazing Race

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