BJ and Tyler of Arabia (Episode 9-8)

Don’t worry. BJ & Tyler are still on The Amazing Race. They’re just broke and have a whole lot less to carry.

In
this week’s episode, it didn’t take the Hippies long to work their way
back into the race from last place. Teams flew from Athens, Greece to
Muscat, Oman, where they all waited until the 6 a.m. opening of a park
with a giant incense burner.

It’s probably safe to assume that
most Americans aren’t too familiar with Oman (who is not the woman
married to David Bowie), and the teams took the time to appreciate the
country’s cleanliness. Frat Guy Jeremy remarked that even the
McDonald’s looked like “a temple McDonald’s.”

When the park
opened, teams found a clue that instructed them to drive 135 miles to
the city of Sur. Ray & Yolanda fell behind, as their arguing
hampered their navigating skills.

All of the teams took things
slowly driving across two flooded roadways. At the first flood, a tiny,
old guy everyone described as “ripped” guided the vehicles across.
Monica said she wanted to take the guy home in her pocket.

With
no one to guide them across the second flood, pack leaders MoJo and the
Hippies dared each other to go first. The Frat Guys didn’t feel like
waiting and forded ahead, taking the lead. Tyler prophesied that one
day, the Frats would know what it was like to finish last.

Once
they arrived in Sur, teams were given a choice of Detours: “Camel” or
“Watch Towers.” MoJo, the Hippies, and Fran & Barry elected to do
“Watch Towers,” which required them to find out which of three ancient
towers held silver message boxes. Teams would receive their clue after
delivering a box to a silver shop one mile away.

The Hippies and
Fran & Barry decided not to look in the closest tower first, and
were rewarded by finding their boxes on the first try. When MoJo
realized how much time they’d already wasted in choosing one wrong
tower, they gave up and switched to “Camel.”

In “Camel,” teams
used a pulley system to hoist a camel onto the back of a pickup truck.
They then used a hand-drawn map to find a village one mile away, where
they received their next clue.

The Frats, who’d chosen to do
“Camel” right away and had loaded their animal quickly, misread their
map and became totally lost. MoJo found the village right away and were
off to their next location, the town of Al Hawiya, 80 miles away.

As
the Frats finally delivered their camel, Ray & Yolanda arrived at
the Detour. They loaded and delivered their camel with no problem, but
they were still well behind the other teams.

In Al Hawiya, a
Road Block forced one team member to dig through 107 mounds of sand
looking for one of five that hid an underground oven. They had to be
careful while extracting the oven’s contents, as the woven bag filled
with chicken would be their dinner that night.

BJ and Barry were
the first to undertake the frustrating task, made worse by the
sweltering desert heat. MoJo and the Frats arrived shortly thereafter,
and Monica was first to finish. Soon, Barry and Eric found their
dinners as well, leaving Tyler with plenty of time to befriend a noisy
camel, as BJ struggled to dig through the mounds.

Ray &
Yolanda arrived as the Frats left the parking lot. After arriving first
and watching all but one team finish before him, BJ started snapping
back at Tyler, whose frequent cheers were more grating than encouraging
at that point. Yolanda dug in the sand nearby, muttering, “You tell
him, BJ.”

Yolanda found her bag of dinner next, adding to BJ’s
misery. He kept digging and eventually found his, but over an hour of
strenuous labor had drained his peppy spirit. The teams raced 150 miles
to the Pit Stop at Jabreen Castle.

Along the way, the Frats
decided to take a short cut, only to discover that the map led them
over dirt roads in the middle of nowhere. They lost time backtracking
to the highway, and it looked as if Tyler’s prophecy from earlier in
the show might come true.

MoJo lost time as well by stopping to
ask for directions to the castle, which was straight ahead of them.
That allowed Fran & Barry to zip by and finish in first place.
Their prize was a trip to Rome.

A second place finish was a
disappointment for MoJo, and Ray & Yolanda weren’t much happier
after spending two days at each other’s throats. Miraculously, Eric
& Jeremy made it back to civilization and finished in fourth, a
little wiser after their near-fatal mistake of thinking they could
outwit a map.

The Hippies arrived in last, landing on the mat
wearing an extra layer of clothing. Their suspicions were right, as
this was the first non-elimination of this season. Phil took their
backpacks and money, and they will start the next leg with $0.

BJ
& Tyler may not have much trouble raising funds next week. They
were the only team to learn how to say “Thank you,” in Arabic, and a
little effort with the language always goes a long way. Plus, they have
the advantage of being, in the words of Tyler, “BJ & Tyler of
Arabia.”

Teams fly to the west coast of Australia next week,
where Joseph uses his top-notch motivational skills to keep Monica on
task. We’ll see if Dr. Phil, Jr., can again come up with something as
inspiring as, “Lift up your spirit before I get pissed.”

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