Reports from the Yellow Line

Leg 9: Oh, No! Calcutta!

Episode 5-9 (Production #509)
"Oh, no! Calcutta!"

[EXT. VICTORIA MEMORIAL, KOLKATA, INDIA - DAY]

(The camera opens on the majestic Victoria Memorial, then pans over to the Pit Stop, where PHIL KEOGHAN and two GREETERS are preparing for the racers' arrival. The view then shifts to an elephant being led in by its mahout. ANITA MANN and HUGH MONERRA, both wearing brightly-colored traditional Indian clothing, are on the animal's back.)

ANITA: Welcome again to "Reports From the Yellow Line"! I'm Anita Mann, and with me is Hugh Monerra. This time, we're coming to you from the ninth Pit Stop of The Amazing Race, the Victoria Memorial in Kolkata, formerly known as Calcutta, India. We'll talk with the teams as they check in to find out how they're doing at this point of the race.
But first, let's get off this beast and talk to Phil!
HUGH: Yes, this is a good time to assess the teams' mental and emotional states. India has proven very difficult in the past. We'll find out soon whether it will be too much for any of the racers. But first, let's get off this beast and talk to Phil!

(The mahout guides the elephant into a seated position to let ANITA and HUGH slip off, then leads the animal away. ANITA and HUGH approach PHIL, who looks very serious.)

PHIL: Anita and Hugh, I'm sorry to say you've both been eliminated from the race.

HUGH: Heh heh, that's funny, Phil! But let's get down to business. This is the fifth season of the race, and this is the third time it's come to India. Do you think the producers are overusing India?

PHIL: Not at all. It's an incredibly varied and dynamic place, and so different from what the teams are used to, there's certain to be moments of dramar, even without the stress of the race. When you throw the race in, anything can happen. I think the producers would be crazy to pass it by.

ANITA: What do you think of the teams that are left? Any favorites?

PHIL: I think they're all tough, tough competitors. The Bowling Moms, Linder & Karen – they've been a nice surprise, but I don't have any favorites or nonfavorites, really.

ANITA: Ever the diplomat! (glances off-camera) We've just gotten word that the first two teams have arrived at the memorial and are getting out of their cabs, so we'll have to cut it short. One last question, Phil: who do you think will land on the mat first?

PHIL: Colin & Christie. No question. There's no eating task right before the Pit Stop.

ANITA: Heh. I'd agree that prediction. And here they come!

(ANITA and HUGH move a few feet behind PHIL as COLIN & CHRISTIE sprint across the grass and land on the mat. The GREETERS offer their welcome, placing cinnabar on the racers' foreheads and flower petals in their hair.)

HUGH: So to no one's surprise, Colin & Christie are first again. Plus, they've won a trip to Mexico ... sorry, EXOTIC Mexico ... once again.

ANITA: And now here come Chip & Kim. Hugh, this is a good finish for them. They slipped back into their old ways when they didn't read the clue and took a cab instead of their SUV, but they recovered pretty quickly.

HUGH: Anita, it sounds as though we have a while before the next team arrives, so let's go have a few words with the first and second place finishers.

(ANITA and HUGH walk to the reflecting pool where COLIN & CHRISTIE are resting.)

ANITA: Colin, Christie, congratulations on another first place finish!

COLIN: Oh, YEAH! Say it again, BAY-BEE! THAT'S what I'm talking about!

CHRISTIE: (laughing) Colin! Be a little more gracious, please. Thank you, Anita.

ANITA: You two seem to be very friendly with Chip & Kim. Colin, you even hugged Chip as he was on the way to the mat. What are your feelings about them?

COLIN: They're awesome. Good people, fantastic competitors, really trustworthy.

CHRISTIE: They're just great. Chip is so funny, and I love Kim. I just have to laugh when Chip gets a crazy idea, and Kim brings him down with a simple "Aw, HELL no!"

COLIN: Here's a shocker for ya: if for some reason we don't win? I hope they do.

HUGH: Are you actually considering the possibility that you might not win?

CHRISTIE: Well, the race is harder than we thought it would be, but I think we have a good chance of winning. But we've already seen that nothing's a sure thing on the race.

COLIN: The other teams are doing a lot better than we expected. We may have had the most first place finishes, but there's only one first place finish that matters.

HUGH: Well said. Thanks for your time, and congratulations again. (to camera) Now let's go talk to Chip & Kim!

(HUGH and ANITA move to the hospitality tent, where CHIP & KIM are starting to eat dinner. CHIP'S plate is heaped full of food.)

ANITA: That's quite a meal there, Chip.

CHIP: It has to be. During the race, we have to buy our food with the money we get in those envelopes. But food's free here at the Pit Stop, so we load up!

HUGH: (eyeing KIM'S modestly sized fruit plate) Yes, I can see that.

CHIP: I have to eat a lot for my metabolism! Besides, I'm still a growing boy.

KIM: (amused) MMM-hmm. He's still growing sideways, that's for sure.

CHIP: Aw, honey, that just means there's more of me for you to love!

ANITA: (laughing) Okay, let's talk a little about the race. First of all, congratulations on your second-place finish. You did great today!

CHIP: (pumping fists in the air) Yeah! Yeah! Yeeeeeahhhhhhh-UH!

KIM: We did all right except for when we didn't read the clue after the water slide like a couple of dummies. At least we made up the time at the airport.

HUGH: And you did well on everything else! What do you think of the other teams?
That Colin, he's a little bit excitable, though.
CHIP: They're all nice people. That Colin, he's a little bit excitable, though.

ANITA: Speaking of which, we talked yesterday and you said you were thinking about using the Yield. Are you going to use it on anyone in particular? Colin & Christie maybe?

KIM: We don't know yet, maybe. But we're not even sure if we're going to use the Yield.

CHIP: My might use it on Colin & Christie if we beat them to the clue box. But we may end up using it to save ourselves if we're near the back of the pack.

HUGH: You're not worried that Colin might get angry?

CHIP: (chuckling) Sure, I'm worried ... I've seen him angry! But it's not going to stop me from using it. It might even be good to get him mad. It'll throw him off his game.

ANITA: Well, I wish you both luck, because you're my favorite racers. I hope you win!

KIM: Awww. Well, aren't you sweet?

CHIP: Thanks, Anita! We hope we win too!

HUGH: Thank you, Chip & Kim. We're going to take a break while we wait for the rest of the teams to arrive. In the meantime, don't forget to visit our website at rftyl.com, where you can get more insider information on The Amazing Race. We'll be back soon!

(The video fades out, then fades back in on LINDA & KAREN high-fiving on the mat.)

HUGH: Welcome back to "Reports From the Yellow Line." Our third place team has just arrived at the Pit Stop, and surprisingly, Anita, it's the bowling moms!

ANITA: I think they even surprised themselves, Hugh! They had a few rough spots this leg – their forgotten bag at Wild Wadi, their misunderstanding with the taxi driver in Dubai, their money problems – but they've got reason to celebrate.

(LINDA & KAREN leave the mat and walk toward ANITA and HUGH, hugging each other as they approach. Abruptly LINDA breaks off the hug and runs to HUGH. She laughs, grabs his hands, and dances around with him.)

LINDA: We're number three! We're number three!

HUGH: (laughing) Yes, I saw! That's fantastic!

LINDA: Isn't it? I can't believe we're still in this thing. (laughs)

KAREN: It's unbelievable.

ANITA: But you two have really proven your mettle. You had a couple of close calls, and you had to give Phil all your money in Egypt, but you stuck with it, and never gave up.

KAREN: There's no way we could give up! We're doing this because of our families.

LINDA: Yeah. Because they'd give us seventeen kinds of hell if we just gave up. (gives a sigh of relief, then laughs and starts dancing again) We thought we were in last place.

HUGH: Here's a question for you: what do you think your chances of winning are?

(LINDA & KAREN look at each other and start laughing.)

KAREN: Us winning! That would be something else, wouldn't it?

LINDA: I'd say our chances are just as good as anyone else's. We've made it this far. Why not? (drops HUGH's hands) You know what? We need to celebrate. And I need a beer. How about joining us for a round?

ANITA: Officially, we're not supposed to drink until after the last team has arrived.

KAREN: But ... UNofficially ...

HUGH: Well, ladies, it sounds like the next team won't be here for a while, so we ... er, YOU should have more than enough time to enjoy a round. (to camera) We'll be right back after this short break. See you in a few!

(The video fades out, then fades in on the mat, where LINDA & KAREN, ANITA and HUGH are standing with PHIL and the GREETERS. They are all holding beer bottles and laughing a bit too heartily, and ANITA'S face is slightly flushed. She spies the camera, hides her beer, and giggles.)

ANITA: Oops – hello!

HUGH: Hellooooo again! (tosses aside his beer bottle) Welcome back! The next team should be arriving soon. And who do you think it is, Anita?

ANITA: Well, it's the next to last team to arrive - that follows the strategy that Kami & Karli told you about on the bus ride to Buenos Aires, so it must be the twins!

PHIL: (as the twins round the corner) Give that lady a prize! And now, give me some room - I have to make them think they'll be eliminated. (laughs as he carefully sets down his beer) Dammit, I love my job.

(ANITA and HUGH quickly step aside. KAMI & KARLI arrive and cheer when PHIL tells them they haven't come in last. They walk off the mat in a daze.)

HUGH: Congratulations, ladies!

KAMI: I can't believe it.

KARLI: I thought for sure we were out.

KAMI: I bet that if Chip had used his Yield, we would be out.

KARLI: We would be.

ANITA: So what happened on this leg? You started out in fourth place, got caught up with everyone at the airport, and flew on the same flight as just about everyone else.

KAMI: We kept getting lost ...

KARLI: ... and Kami couldn't make the bricks right.

KAMI: I was trying my best! You weren't helping with your bossiness.

KARLI: Kami, I was telling you what you needed to do. You weren't looking at the guy who was making them.

KAMI: I WAS looking!

KARLI: Oh, right. I wish we could do this leg over.

HUGH: Really? What would you have done differently?

KARLI: I would have done the Roadblock. I knew how to make the bricks.

KAMI: That is such bull–

ANITA: Let's move on, shall we? Right. Who do you see as your biggest competition?

KARLI: Right now, with it down to five teams – well, four – everybody's tough.

KAMI: But probably our biggest competition is Colin & Christie and Chip & Kim.

KARLI: Yeah, I agree.

KAMI: Oh, nice to know that you agree with me on something!

KARLI: Why are you being so argumentative?

KAMI: Why are you being so bossy? Since the brick factory –

HUGH: Excuse me, Kami & Karli! I'm, uh ... I'm getting a signal that you need to check in with the race production staff, so THANK you for your time!

(HUGH puts an arm around each of the twins' shoulders and gently but firmly pushes them away. KAMI & KARLI say their thank-yous and bicker as they walk off. HUGH covers his mike but we can still hear him speaking in low tones to ANITA.)
I had to get rid of those two. I'm starting to see double, and I don't know if I could've coped with four of them.
HUGH: (whispering) I had to get rid of those two. I'm starting to see double, and I don't know if I could've coped with four of them. (normal voice) Well, we're down to one last team – Brandon & Nicole. They had a very hard day, and we'll ask them about it when they arrive. For now, we're going to take a break. Stay with us, won't you?

(Video fades out, but not before catching ANITA sneaking a swig of her beer. When the video fades in again, it is early evening. ANITA and HUGH are sitting in the hospitality tent with a happy but exhausted BRANDON & NICOLE.)

ANITA: We're back again with the final team of racers, Brandon & Nicole, who are still in the race because this was a nonelimination round. How do you two feel?

NICOLE: Relieved. Tired. Shocked. Blessed.

BRANDON: Happy we didn't cut our hair off.

ANITA: That wasn't a task you expected, I'm guessing.

BRANDON: Not at ALL. People never had to do anything like that on the race before.

NICOLE: Maybe for other teams it wouldn't have been a problem, but our jobs are linked to our appearance – for Brandon especially. We couldn't do it.

BRANDON: I keep thinking about how horrible we would have felt if we HAD done it, and then we found out this was a nonelimination leg!

NICOLE: Oh, I would have cried for sure.

HUGH: Let's talk a little bit about your decision to go for the Fast Forward. You tried for it because of the troubles you were having at the brick factory.

BRANDON: Yeah, I really had problems. We rejected the Fast Forward at first because we thought someone else had already gotten it, but then we saw that everyone was there making bricks, so we went for it.

NICOLE: When we read what it was, I was really sorry I convinced Brandon to go get it.

ANITA: You were pretty emotional after that.

NICOLE: Yeah, but Brandon prayed with me, and that helped calm me down.

HUGH: Since you came in last, Phil took all your money, and you'll get no money at the start of the next leg. What are you going to do?

BRANDON: I don't know yet. Probably beg for money before we start the next leg.

NICOLE: We hadn't thought about it much. We're still trying to get our heads around the fact that we haven't been eliminated.

ANITA: Do you think you can win the race?

BRANDON: Anything's possible. We'll accept whatever the Lord has planned for us. (leans over to NICOLE and kisses her hair)

NICOLE: We'll pray and try really hard to win it, but whatever He decides we'll live with. We'll see tomorrow. But right now, I just want to get a shower and go to bed.

HUGH: We'll let you go, then. Thank you, Brandon & Nicole. Good luck tomorrow.

(BRANDON & NICOLE say their thanks and leave holding hands.)

ANITA: Well, that's all the teams, Hugh. I think it's the first time that all the teams arriving at the India Pit Stop left happy.

HUGH: I think you're right, Anita. India wasn't the racer-killer that we expected. But Killer Fatigue could hit anytime, and we've still got a long way to go, starting with ... well, you'll find out next time! That's it for another edition of "Reports From the Yellow Line." Thanks for joining us, and good night from India!

[FADE OUT]


This is a work of fiction, for entertainment purposes only. Like Santa Claus, only without the presents.





Talk about this story.