Speaking of which, Amani and Marcus are the next to arrive, and are much happier to be team number four than Ernie and Cindy were to be team number three. Post-leg, Marcus interviews that this leg is the football equivalent of a conference championship, and then "it's on to the Super Bowl." And then they go home and watch the season and they both discover how much of their relationship is predicated on Amani keeping her smirking to herself when he talks like this.
That means Bill and Cathi are done, and if they had to go ahead and go through the motions of finding the pigeons and meeting them later to find out they're going to the Atomium, we don't see it. As of now, they're driving straight there in the darkness, Bill saying he's not ashamed of how they did. "I think they're both startled at how long we have managed to stay with it." And they're not the only ones. There's a whole montage of their happiest and dorkiest moments throughout the season, and Bill says that it's been "a hoot" and has improved their relationship.
The moon's shining through the clouds by the time the finally arrive, jogging up to the mat at last. The greeter welcomes them to the Atomium, they politely thank her, and for the third time in the race, Phil tells them they're the last team to arrive. But this is the first time he actually Philiminates them. They say they loved every minute of the race. Phil says they've proven that age won't stop a team from doing well on the race, refraining from telling them they've lasted longer than any other old-people team ever has. Cathi agrees, "Lots of times older Americans are overlooked, and it's like you're invisible. We can make a contribution, we can be competitive, and I think we were." Bill agrees, and adds, "Win, lose or draw, there's not reason for us to ever fall apart." Post-leg, Bill calls it "one more chance to be with my best friend and do some really, really special things in the world. And I would do it all over again, same person, same way." Oh, shit, are they dying? Man, that would be an even bigger downer.
M. Giant is a Minneapolis-based writer with a wife, a son, and a number of cats that seems to have settled at around two. Learn waaaay too much about him at Velcrometer, follow him on Twitter, or just e-mail him at M.Giant[at]gmail.com.