'The Amazing Race' recap: "I Feel Like I'm In the Circus"

amazing-race-cast-19.jpgFrom the floating village that was last week's Pit Stop, teams are magically teleported to the mainland, where they have to take some "local transportation." That turns out to be elephants, up along a jungle river course to search for a clue sunken in a murky waterfall pool. That clue sends them to find a miniature shrine called a spirit house, which they have to disassemble and transport to a normal-sized temple for reassembly. This turns out to be a rare if not unprecedented "Double Road Block," where the team member who hunted in the pool has to rebuild the spirit house. The snowboarders, whose devout Christianity is suddenly getting a lot of play, hold onto their lead through both tasks even in the face of Tommy's incomplete memory and his need to go back to the start of the task. Laurence makes a similar mistake on Zac's behalf, and then blames Zac for it, which is not cool. Ernie does the same thing, but at least he blames himself, and Cindy is surprisingly cool about it. Some control freak.

After leaving hours behind everyone else, twins Liz and Marie have to shovel elephant poo and wash one of the beasts for their Speed Bump, which they're actually thrilled about, being the elephant-lovers they are. For the teams ahead of them, the required taxi ride to a station to catch a bus to Bangkok proves almost ruinously expensive, especially Cindy and Ernie, who get ripped off pretty badly. Laurence and Zac, however, spring for a first-class bus, then bail and hoof it back to the station to start over when they remember the rule against buying first-class tickets. Liz and Marie, still bringing up the rear, have a scary moment when they give all their money to their cabbie, who still isn't satisfied and nearly makes them miss the bus they've already bought tickets on, only to relent and rescue them at the last minute. So with all the different teams on different buses arriving in Bangkok at different times, things are pretty chaotic by the time everyone reaches the city the next morning to feed fish in a canal and race from there to the Pit Stop.

Amani and Marcus win their first leg, immediately followed by grandparents Bill and Cathi, and they all act like they won the million already. Ernie and Cindy make a good recovery and end in third, although they might have scored another victory had they not bailed on their cab. Liz and Marie, stranded in the city with no money, are reduced to begging rides from taxi drivers, while Andy and Tommy end up asking directions to the Pit Stop from a teacher, who ends up disappearing with their clue and leaving them stranded indefinitely. Justin and Jennifer come in fourth after a leg of minimal bickering, followed by the snowboarders and the sailors. Upon reaching the mat, Phil informs Laurence and Zac that the no-first-class rule only applies to plane tickets and not ground transportation, so they cost themselves a lot of time for nothing. After struggling with navigating Bangkok, Jeremy and Sandy are an emotional seventh-place team, and Liz and Marie finally face their inevitable Philimination. And just when I had figured out how to tell them apart, too.