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The one where we finally ride in a helicopter. The Bachelorette Season 7 Episode 9 Recap

So can we all agree and say last night’s episode was a leeetle too drawn out. When we get to the very end of the season (hallelujah!) filling two hours can seem a little forced and when you add in the fact that it’s Ashley we’re watching, well it is forced. But alas, I stuck it out and have decided to awake at the crack of dawn to bring you the recap a little earlier. Let me know what you think of the earlier edition (1. because I heart comments 2. because I’m not sure if it will be as good without at least one cup of coffee in my system).

So we’re in Fiji – is this the same resort they go to every year? Sure looks like it. Either way, if you and your honey are looking for a Bachelorette style get away, it can be yours here. In case you weren’t aware Ashley tells us, “Fiji is a set of islands in the South Pacific.” Well thanks for the geography lesson Ash. I’m guessing Ames dropped that knowledge bomb on you and you just had to share it with all of us. Then an ocean lends a geyser like spray of water into the air which I’m guessing is the producers (and nature) letting us know that Ashley’s love will explode on this episode.

Up until this point, Ashley has made a habit of wearing tops as dresses, now we see her mixing it up and using tops as skirts. Either way, she’s not going to let a beach trip to Fiji stop her from wearing her favorite 9 inch heels. Sand shmand.

Ashley then provides us with an unnecessary recap of the final three aka the twins and JP. I pay very little attention here (since it feels like I’ve seen this montage at least 3 times already) with the exception of commenting on how much I love Consty’s family and gushing on JP’s sequence (during which I catch myself awkwardly smiling at the screen, SE much). I feel it is worth noting here that I am actually proud of Ashley for being able to keep JP around to the end. Nice work little lady.

We’re back in Fiji where Ashley, dressed in her standard Flashdance attire (really, how many off-the-shoulder tops can one girl own?), contemplatively reflects by the ocean. This moment of clarity is followed by some journaling at which point Drew pips in with his insightful comment of the show, “She really is 15.” Yes, yes she is. This comment also sets a tone for this episode during which we’re reminded far too often how much Ashley is a 15-year-old girl trapped in a 17-year-old body.

One last recap of the journey and then we’re off! Except we’re NOT! Duh Duh Duh.

What the What?

When we return from the break, the producers have gone all handheld camera on us. The music, editing and ugly flip-flops cue the arrival of the ominous swamp monster that is Ryan. So long happy sun-loving dude and hello creepy, scary, psycho axe murderer. The producers surely hate Ashley if they are allowing this creeper (who’s clearly one wrong word away from a mental break) to come back and kill her.

She invites Ryan into the villa and I yell ‘NO!’ instinctively at the TV. Doesn’t she know you never let the scary bad man inside?

This is definitely not the kind of surprise Ashley was looking for and she looks about as awkward as I feel, so I’m thinking for this short moment we may have something in common. Ry, as Ashley as now taken to calling him, strings together a creepy monologue that includes Thai chi and something about not being able to get back to his sun-sacrificing.

I am sooooo (I really hate having to add all those extra O’s but there is absolutely no other way to describe my feelings) weirded out. The desperation is making me physically ill (which is good for Drew since he gets everything I am now too sick to eat for dinner). When Ryan says “Call me crazy.” I do and then pick up my phone and make a call requesting he be taken in for evaluations. The secondary embarrassment that they’ve crammed into these few minutes is insane. This is the kind of SE that gives me anxiety and I just want it to end.

I think Ryan can sense that Ashley (and all of America) is creeped out so he let’s her know he’s made a little vacay of his trip halfway around the world and that she can find him in his room where unbeknownst to us, he will wait, alone until Ashley comes to see him. Then he’s gone and left to creep out the producers and the hotel staff. It’s raining as he leaves and I wonder if it’s symbolic.

Now back to our regularly scheduled Bachelorette.

Date #1  aka It’s about damn time we were on a yacht.

Ashley waves excitedly to Ben like the 15-year-old that she is. Despite saying that he’s really excited, it’s hard to believe when his voice sounds like he is being forced to walk the plank (yup, I just made a pirate reference. Not really sure where that came from bu I like it). I know I’ve noticed it in the last couple episodes but has he been this monotone all season? I think I must have just been distracted by his normalcy.

Ashley tells Ben they’ll be going on a boat ride and Ben asks if it’s the lame dingy tied up to the dock (which is not an odd question since they haven’t really done anything cool on dates all season). Ashley let’s Ben know that the producers have finally let her play with the big boy toys and they will be cruising in style on a yacht! I thought they had all but eliminated nice things from Ashley’s season. Looks like they were just holding back on us.

All aboard where these two act like a pair of kids. They shout “you go first” in unison, then yell “jinx”, begin giggling and then grab their kiddie cocktails from TGI Fridays.

The theme of this date is agreement. They have made a pact in advance to agree on EVERYTHING and it is exhausting. This agreement even extends to the color of their clothes. Barf. After a day of lathering each other up in sunscreen (Ashley got a little suggestive in her positioning here, not sure how I feel about it), snorkeling and canoodling, these two are spent. Honestly, I would go into more detail on their date but it’s not really necessary. Imagine letting the annoying cheerleader from 1st period sophomore year and her strange but cute boyfriend on a yacht. That is what it was like.

You missed a spot.

They both agree (I know, it’s so weird that they would agree) that today was their “best day ever” and then it’s time for dinner and by dinner, I mean the pre-fantasy suite portion of their date.

Ben borrows one of JP’s v-neck tees (Wait, is that thing Mesh? And a Sweater? Yikes!) and awkwardly open his arms wide for a big Ben hug. Ashley accepts because she knows that a big Ben hug is the first in a series of embraces that will occur on fantasy suite night. It is worth noting that for once, I actually like what Ashley is wearing. Please don’t judge me.

Ben is getting all mushy and his nervousness is translating to weird awkwardness at dinner. It’s even more awkward with accompanied by sad piano music.”That’s why i have this grin on my face. I’m quite happy.” He’s saying this but his face says pained sadness.Could have fooled me Ben.

He has decided that tonight is the night to tell Ash that he la,la,la loves her. But the conversation leading up to the awkward one-sided I love you (did you all know that Ashley isn’t allowed to say ‘I Love You’ back? I had no idea but Drew has known all along. I guess only one of us has been paying attention to the “rules) is making me cringe. I feel the onset of  SE goosebumps and cover my face in horror. Ben is dancing around it and I don’t want him to say it  and yet i do because I just want it to end (which is probably what you’re feeling about this blog post). It’s like waiting for a shot at the doctor’s office -  you know its going to be horrible but you also just want it to be over.

“You know, I’m on my way to, you know, the whole I love you thing.” Did he just hiccup in the middle of that? Did that count as I love you? Woof, this whole conversation is painstakingly awful.

ABC puts us out of our misery and cuts to Ashley who says “I’m hoping tonight Ben will show me how he feels.” Which translates to “I hope we get it on tonight in the fantasy suite.” We cut back to Ashley pulling out the envelope and seductively reading it (like she really needs to try that hard). Ben accepts, duh and it’s on.

Before getting down to business Ben decides that the little hiccup of an I love you was an uncontrolled outburst, not the actual phrase and that he is going to hold back the real thing. Whatever, just get out of here and into the fantasy suite.

I still can't believe you can carry me!

After a 30 second dip in the pool, Ben carries (I know, I can’t believe he can carry her either) Ashley inside to make whoopie (yup, I just said whoopie and I liked it).

Date #2 aka It’s about damn time we flew in a helicopter.

We return to the horror of Ashley’s latest ensemble. Not only does she act like a 15-year-old, she dresses like one, a loose one at that.

Behold. My bare midriff!

It’s Consty date time which thankfully, also means it’s helicopter time. I thought maybe ABC had called off all helicopter flights after their excessive use last season but it’s good to have them back. Can’t say I wasn’t disappointed that instead of a plethora of helicopter, rappelling and yacht dates, this season we got to see a lot of markets, picnics and back alleys. I had almost given up hope but there must not be any markets or back-alleys in Fiji to try to lose Ashley in.

This date is already better than the one with Ben since Consty has the ability to show emotion. One laugh and he’s set himself apart from his twin. This joy is abruptly ended end they cut to one of the more frightening moments in the history of The Bachelorette. Ryan is standing alone on the beach watching the helicopter from below. Watching, waiting, plotting. I am seriously nervous for their safety and by their, I mean JP.

Creepy.

Consty and Ash arrive at a waterfall (jeez, they saved EVERYTHING good for this one episode) which Ash says they will be jumping from. I’m thinking this is gonna be awesome until I find out they are jumping from a high-dive level ledge under the waterfall. Waah, Waaaa.

Consty takes the “leap of faith” Ashley’s been waiting for by jumping from the ledge (with his shoes on?). We know this is a serious accomplishment because it is accompanied by the serious accomplishment music.

Fun fact: Consty looked at 108 houses before buying one. First, who knew there were that many houses in Cumming, GA? Second, Consty is a picky guy, which I respect.  It’s also good that he knows people are more dynamic than houses. Well yeah, you can also sleep with people rather than in one. Okay, never mind that came out dirty. Moving on.

It’s dinner time and Consty, while not dressed to the nines, is looking better than his mesh-loving twin. Dinner starts and it’s clear – Consty doesn’t really like Ashley that much. This date is not very romantical and within moments the writing is on the wall – Consty doesn’t want to propose next week, he doesn’t want to kick it in the fantasy suite (and all that it “implies”) and last but not least he does not want another rose. He does this all in the guise of saying he respects her too much to continue moving forward but Ashley knows what this means and she starts dropping insecurity bombs left and right.

Just when he’s about to cut President Obama breaks in for some important address on the national debt crisis. Doesn’t the Prez know that Ashley’s journey to find her one true love is way more important than our credit limit and the financial health of our nation? GAH. 

I’m about to get on my soap box when I realize we are behind on our DVR and I can fast-forward through this (oh quit your judging, you just wish you could have fast-forwarded too). 

And we’re back to this nightmare of a dinner date.

Consty is dunzo and not cause Ashley is sending him home. Another dude packing his bags and telling Ashley they’re just not that into her. There have been quite a few guys who have said sayonara early this season – is this a new record? Ashley stepping up her game and running everyone off!

So Consty packs up his toiletries and heads back to Cumming (what he couldn’t stay one more night? jeez!) while Ashley sits alone at dinner and read about what could have been in the fantasy suite.

Side note: Can we talk about how they put an actual, old-fashioned key in the envelope. Is there still a hotel on this planet that uses keys like that? Especially one as nice as this. C’mon CH.

What do you think this opens?

After counting to 100, Ashley finally gets up and sulks back to the fantasy suite (Big door. Little Ashley), drowns her sorrows in champagne and covers herself in a blanket of insecurity.

When she wakes up, she has a new resolve. She will make these dudes prove they are there for her! And in the mean time, she will boost her spirits by visiting Ryan who will, literally, beg for her affection. Just the kind of pick-me-up Ash needs to get the day started.

Rendezvous with Ryan

So I know people have been telling me for a while now, but I never noticed how bow-legged Ashley really is until this walk to Ryan’s chickee hut. She arrives and bites her nails in nervous anticipation (“What if even HE doesn’t like me?”). Ryan couldn’t be happier to see Ashley mostly because his self-induced seclusion in his room is finally over.

The two throw compliments back and forth to help boost their egos and once Ashley is finally feeling better about herself she breaks it down to Ryan. Ryan’s odd, scary smile (that hides the craziness beneath) breaks when she tells him that there is no spark, no romance. Ryan yells “Nuh-uh!” but Ashley holds strong and tells him it’s over.

Yeah, not so much.

All along we knew that Ryan was just one goodbye away from a total meltdown and here it is. The break-up is even worse the second time around and I think Ry is considering flinging himself over the balcony and into the ocean for good. The producers talk him down from that but then he spirals into a Howard Hughesian (you know, the guy Leonardo played in The Aviator) rant “It’ll happen, It’ll happen…. It’ll happen. It’ll happen.” I want to hide my entire being and fight the SE but I am way too concerned for his mental stability. Is there suicide watch in Figi?

It'll happen. It'll happen.

Date 3 aka The One with the Bi-Plane. 

I like how they save JP for the end every time. They know that he is all we are interested in and therefore make us sit through all the crapola to get to the good stuff.

If you didn’t know that Ashley was head over heels in love with JP, you should be full aware after she squealed his name in excitement like the 15 year-old that she is – JAAAAAAAYYYYY PEEEEEEEE!

They smooch and I realize that Drew has the same shirt that JP is wearing. It’s official I’m married to a hipster.

ABC continues to make up for the season of lackluster dates and takes us on a bi-plane ride. And these two love birds take flight just like their romance. Know how I know that? The music. This track is from the “Epic Love Greatest Hits (Instrumental Version)” I think it’s track 6 – “The flight to true love.”

These two paw at each other on the beach while I wonder aloud how long it will take for JP to take off his shirt. It takes WAY too long but it happens. Since the anticipation for that is over all I can do is wonder how long we’ll have to watch them open mouth kiss in the ocean.

Ashley spends the entire date trying to get JP to say ‘I love you.’ And while he refuses to say the words, the giddy, googly-eyed look on his face shows that the feeling is there.

It’s time for dinner and by dinner, I mean the 15 minutes before the fantasy suite.

JP tells Ashley he had an incredible day to which totally shocks and surprises Ashley. “What? You had fun with ME? It must have been because we’re in Fiji right?”

These two awkwardly grope while Ashley tells JP that two people have gone home this week. This makes JP beam with excitement until she burst the bubble and tells him that Ryan came back.  JP is on a roll of being cute and fun and awesome until he goes and says the dreaded B word.

I think this is where things get kind of serious. This is always the part where I tune out and check twitter or get a snack. All I hear is slow, thoughtful piano music and JP saying something about making Ashley his wife. Whatevs, when are you two heading to the fantasy suite?

Let's do this.

The card finally appears and Ashley tries to be sneaky about giving it to JP. He is thrilled with all the FS implies and it’s on. “This is what the past few months have led up to…” the sexy time.

“Are you excited?” Ashley says (because she is excited about EVERYTHING). Uh duh he’s excited.

Ashley changes into a men’s button down which I think is her code for let’s do this. They start open mouth kissing and I am ready to leave now.  Let’s close the doors and leave these two with their weird hand positions and slobbery kisses. (Since we all know that JP wins, do you think she is this annoying in real life with him?)

Unnecessary Rose Ceremony 

I’m gonna make this part quick cause lord knows this has been a LONG post. CH and Ash sit down for their one-on-one and here’s all you need to know. Ole girl is insecure as hell so she is going to make sure the guys want to be there during the rose ceremony. Got it.

It’s raining, once again, at her rose ceremony.  Do you think the constant rose ceremony rain is a sign from the gods?  (or was that sentence a sign from the gods that I’ve been watching too much ‘Rome’ on Netflix?)

Both dudes accept the roses (uh duh) since it would make them look pretty lame to turn her down right after they made whoopie in the fantasy suite.

We close with the incredibly awkward final three champagne toast. Did you all get uncomfortable watching Ashley try to pay attention to both of them? If I was Ben or JP, I’d get my toast on and be out of there quick!

Yay! You still like me!

Well we made it through another week. Only one more episode left. Can you believe it? I thought we might not make it (I don’t think some of you did, the readership has declined throughout the season. I’m blaming that on Ashley and not my writing – it’s my blog. I do what I want).  Men Tell All Special Sunday and then the Finale Monday!

And then it’s Bachelor Pad!

Next week it’s all kissing, mean coupon lady and long dresses. Until then… stay tuned!

Wait hold on. Why do they save all the funny/extra weird stuff for the very end. Good to know Ashley has a foot fetish but really – I  wish they would show some of this funnier/sillier/slightly more normal (okay not the foot thing but the actual real conversation) stuff for the show.

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Making the Ordinary Extraordinary. Hometown Dates on The Bachelorette. Season 7 Episode 8 Recap

Hey friends. Can you believe we FINALLY made it to hometowns? I can see the end in sight and I couldn’t be happier. Just gotta keep your head in the game and look ahead to Bachelor Pad (they’re showing the promos – it’s gotta be soon).

To get us started, I’ve decided that I will no longer recap montages/previews but I will say I am excited to see an old man make it rain.

So we  meet up with our girl Ash at her condo in Philly (I saw a lot of people giving Ash a hard time for saying Philly is her hometown but not going there last season. Simmer down peeps, I am no ASh fan but she lives in Philly and she grew up/her fam lives in that little town in Mainada that serves that weird/delicious poutin thing.) Ashley’s going through her mail (c’mon ABC ole girl is annoying but I know she had WAY more mail than that after being in Asia for like a month. I go out-of-town for a weekend and it’s like the post office bombed my mailbox.) playing with her pup all while being dressed like she’s going to a wedding rehearsal dinner.

While this is going on Ashley gives us the deets on why she likes these four dudes.

Ben: Superficially Ashley loves him. She likes his hair, his eyes, his body but yet never mentions his personality (or lack thereof) or how he feels about her. This one’s got true love written all over it.

Constantine: She likes him for all same reasons as Ben since they are essentially the same person.

Ames: He’s unique and nerdy. Oh and also humble about how much better he is than everyone. Basically, he snuck into the final four and she has no idea how he’s been here this long.

JP: Well, duh. She likes him cause he’s a smoking hottie with more of a personality than a wet blanket which is all the other guys are working with.

Ashley is now ready to get her hometowns on. So she steps outside and hails a cab. Wait, what? Clearly the producers hate her as much as we all do since they couldn’t even send a car service for her. And we’re off….

….to Cumming, GA. Yup, that’s what it’s really called. 

Constantine’s hometown name is the first of many sexual innuendos that get thrown around this episode. So get used it to.

These two love birds meet how all young lovers on this show do for hometowns with the required Running! Picking Up! Spinning! Hugging! sequence but this one has a new addition, SKIPPING! YAY!

And next these two go on the required hometown picnic date. While Consty and Ash catch up, I notice he’s still sporting a Asian bead bracelet from his trip. Since I’m paying more attention to his souvenir sporting, I definitely didn’t catch anything they were talking about. I’m guessing it was something like:

Ash: Oh my gawwd, I missed you.
Consty: Me too.
Ash: Can you believe it’s been so long?
Consty: Um, it was like a week ago.
Ash: Thank you for picking me up and twirling me. I am so surprised you can lift me.
Consty: (Confused look, different from normal sleepy confused look) You’re Welcome?

The itsy bitsy spider went up the water spout.... (ABC/Guy D'Alema)

So this ends and it’s off to Consty’s family restaurant which surprise! is not Greek but Italian.  We get little to no explanation on this conundrum so it’s on to making a pizza of love. Ashley is super excited about all of this pizza making (is that what the kids are calling it these days?) and attempts to bake Consty into her slice of love. “Put whatever you like in it” (That’s what she said.) Consty says and then Ashley feebly tries to put him in the pie. Guessing she got this idea from Shawntel’s epic hometown date last season. (What are crematorium jokes not funny?)

After a slew of food jokes (“I’m so cheesy!”) these two get down to business. Or as you may know it better, eating a meal.  They blabber on about falling in love while the girl employees gawk like teeny boppers from a near-by window. They provide great commentary like “AwWWW!” “She’s so pretty.” “They’re so cute.” and my personal favorite “OOOOOOOO! They’re kissing.”

After picking the pizza out of each others teeth with their tongues, these two head on over to Consty’s house to meet the fam. And can we all agree, Demetri, Elleni and Maria KILLED IT. They set a high standard for the rest of the hometown dates and no family could compare to their Big Fat Greek Bachelorette Dinner Episode.

No Ashley, I cannot be a pizza topping. (ABC/Guy D'Alema)

I loved all of this hometown especially when Elleni got awkward and quizzed Ashley hard about whether she would be open to relocating. Basically, the little Greek mama bear was gonna put the kibosh on anyone trying to take her Consty our of Cumming (please ignore how gross that sounded).

I’m hoping Consty is the next Bachelor just because I want Demetri to get some more TV face time. His accent makes even Ashley seem fun and interesting. After a series of H-to-H’s, the rest of the Consty clan (of course his niece is named Athena. I love it.) storm through the doors with casseroles, drinks and apparently A LOT of twenty-dollar bills. Um, how come whenever I go to a family party there isn’t some fun uncle making it rain with $20 bills? I am sure I would go to a lot more family events if this happened on the regular.

Make it Rain.

This date is by far one of the best of the season (see, i can use hyperbole too!). OPA!!! to the clan Consty for turning this drabness around. Since Ash is a debbie downer though, she makes us leave before they start getting really wild and smashing plates.

We leave with Ashley and Consty swapping spit while Demetri and Elleni watch creepily from the door. End Scene.

Next Stop: Chadd’s Ford, PA. Oh Muffy! It’s time for Ames’ hometown. 

Before the required Run!Hug!Lift!Spin! sequence Ames let’s us know he’s really excited. I’m going to take his word for it since he face shows no sign of emotion or recognition.

They meet up and Ames let’s Ashely know this place “Is like home to me.” Um, yeah Ames because it IS your home.

So we pull up and Serena Van Der Ames sinks her sister claws into Ashley the minute her stripper heels hit the patio. We relive the Muay Thai boxing fiasco and Ames’ other adventures in love before we break down into one-on-ones.

Serena drags Ashley by her hair over to sit besides their in-door pool where she breaks it down. “Hurt my brother and I’ll hurt you.” Okay, so it didn’t exactly go down like that but more or less Serena is OBSESSED with her baby bro and will cause bodily harm to anyone who breaks his little Ken doll heart. And I believe her, she seems a lot bigger and a lot meaner than Ashley.

After hooking Ashley up to the lie-detector and running a brain scan analysis on her answers, Serena knows that Ashley is full of it and has no love for our boy Ames. So what does she do? She takes a page from her Gossip Girl younger self and runs over to blab to Ames, telling him how she’s not that into him and he needs to step up his game. They share some weird sexual innuendo and I am officially creeped out. I was almost officially creeped out with Ames’ awkward hand gestures but this is what really pushed me over the top.

Since Serena van der Ames stole all the spotlight on this date we hardly get to see any of Ash’s sit down with Mama Ames or Ames mama’s boy chat. We do learn about Ames losing both his dad and his step-dad and I am genuinely touched for a moment. Then I notice that Ashley is not paying any attention to what Jane Ames is saying. I’m guessing she stops paying attention when they stop talking about her. Can’t blame her, I tend to do that too. (Just kidding. Or am I?)

The awkward Ames family says their goodbyes and they duo are whisked off to a magical magnolia filled park. Ames thinks magnolia’s are the most romantic thing ever (um, haven’t we already been to all the most romantic places ever? I think we need to establish some sort of ranking for this kind of thing) which my grandma would wholeheartedly agree with.

Cheers! Wanna Party? (ABC/Ken White)

Ames let’s Ashley know that he used to go to boarding school (duh!) where he was a big nerd (shocker!) and that he didn’t have a ton of friends (really?!). Ashley pretends to act sympathetic but has no idea what to say here. The odd moment is broken up when Ames goes into his diatribe on making the “ordinary extraordinary.” According to Ames there is “magic in the ordinary.” Um, your ordinary must be a lot cooler than mine Ames cause I’m pretty sure commuting to work, working, going to the grocery store and cleaning my house aren’t filled with a lot of magic. They are filled with a lot of alcohol though, maybe that could help make everything more magical.

Ames suggests they make some ordinary magic so they kiss (after staring at each other for WAY too long) and ride off into the forest in a carriage driven by some George Washington look alikes.

Sonoma Valley, CA. Bottoms Up!  

We’re halfway through the hometown marathon and now we’re heading out west to Sonoma Valley or what 40-year-old women refer to as Heaven. I admit I’m a little excited about this one. Ben has seemed to have some personality this season and I am assuming there will be a lot of boozing in Sonoma so it should be a good time.

If you were thinking anything like me, you had to have been sorely disappointed. I am going to say this may have been the most boring hometown date I’ve ever seen. I spent the last few minutes of it online shopping for baby gear because that seemed more interesting than what I was watching (it was pretty boring too which shows how awful this date was).

Ben opens the date by saying “This is my hometown. This is where I grew up. And Ashley is here. And I’m very excited about it.” all with the enthusiasm of a wet sock.  He tries to look mildly interested for the running! jumping! twirling! meet-up but even that is half-assed.

Will this make you stop crying? (ABC/Ron Koeberer)

Since there isn’t a shred of originality on this show, they go for a picnic. (Isn’t Ashley just a LITTLE tired of picnics at this point? Did these guys really do that much picnicking growing up?) The entire Ben and Ashley alone time is spent with Ashley trying to paw Ben’s clothes off while he stares awkwardly ahead, speaking exclusively  in monotone, looking like a deer in headlights. What happened to the Scooby-Doo loving stoner that we’d grown to know and not hate?

Ben tells Ashley he’s only brought one girl home before which is why, i’m guessing, he’s acting so weird. Ashley kind of freaks out and all the while I’m wishing we could go back to Cumming (Georgia that is) and hang with Consty and his fam.

Ashley and Ben taking a hair brushing break and then head over to his house to meet his mom and sister. They also speak exclusively in monotone and shockingly are way more uptight that Ames’ family. Ben’s sister manages to grill Ashley through the entire dinner before taking a break to lay down the law for her brother.

Was anyone else a little overwhelmed with these intense brother/sister relationships? Yikes. Anyway, at this point, the monotone convos were making my brain numb so I stopped paying attention.

When I looked back up Ben was crying and we finally got to leave. (For all the more sensitive viewers, I know his Dad passed away and that’s very sad but wow – that date was ROUGH!)

I thought this moment would never come…. Rosslyn, NY – Hot Skating with JP.

If I wasn’t excited enough about the date with JP, I was over the moon after that monotone date from Sonoma. JP, his hotness and his voice inflection were on hand to spin Ashley who could barely keep her hands off our hottie hipster.

Ashley doesn’t care where JP takes her as long as they’re together. For once, I am 100% behind Ashley. But JP being cute, hot and original takes Ashley on a tour of his childhood with a date to the roller rink aptly named Hot Skates.

JP and Ashley lace up and then hit the floor for couples skate. Ashley “feels like [she's] back in 7th grade.” Except it’s better because there definitely weren’t hottie like this in Mainada.

Everything is going well until the music starts. Wait, hold up. Really? That song. I know Ashley can’t fight that feeling but that wasn’t even the original version. I got a serious case of SE but then I realized I was watching JP and it passed. After tongue kissing in the strobe lights, JP takes Ash back to meet his fam.

Hot Skates (ABC/Lou Rocco)

ps. I do need to mention the fact that Ashley asked JP how he could be single for so long which was code for “What’s wrong with you? There’s got to be something I don’t know about since you are otherwise smoking hot and really charming.”

So back at the family pad, we meet JP’s mom who belongs on the SNL skit Coffee Tawk. I love her though. We also meet JP less genetically blessed brother Roy. They also say some white-haired dude is his Dad but he is never allowed to talk so I’m not sure.

Ilene gets real and asks JP if he is in love (since she knows Ashley is in love with him, obvi). He skates (you like how I used skating again huh) around the question but I’m pretty sure he digs her.

Kirk + Zack = Perfect Early 90's Love.

This date is pretty standard family fun and then Ilene goes big – she break out his Bar MIitzah. Ah MAZ ING. Not a boy, not yet a man JP was a perfect mix of Kirk Cameron and Zack Morris. Love it. What a cutie. He definitely didn’t have the same issues as Ames in high school. This is a special message for Ilene: Thank you for bringing out that picture. We all owe you and Consty’s family for bringing your A-game to hometowns.

At the end of this date, if you weren’t convinced JP wins (yeah I consider this a game) then you should know now.

Rose Ceremony

Phew. We made it. I’m going to skip over Ashley’s babbling to Chris Harrison and get down to business.

After pulling down her long black sweater and gazing longingly at the frames, Ashley knows who’s got to go.

Roses go to:

  • Ben
  • JP

Ames looks unique with his tan suit and hand-in-the-pocket style which Drew refers to as “keeping it Ivy league.” I’m not quite sure what my husband knows about Ivy League style since we both went to the University of Kentucky, but we’ll go with it.

Consty looks confused/confident. Just the way I like him.

  • Consty for the win.

Poor Ames doesn’t know what to do so he awkwardly says bye to the dudes and wanders out with Ashley. Sitting like Forest Gump, he gives Ashley his good-bye speech before giving her a HAND SHAKE. How uncomfortable was that?  Oh Ames, bless your heart.

Before he leaves, Ames gives us one final piece of poetry, “I thought I would be sharing a life time of adventures with this woman but instead I have a lifetime of adventures by myself  - which is less enticing.”

Oh Ames, I’m sure there is a frozen faced girl out there looking for adventures with you. Maybe you can find her on the next season of The Bachelor (no, nevermind, I take that back).

So there it is. What did you all think of hometowns? What do you think about the previews for Bali?

I’ll be back on track with Love in the Wild this week.

Until then… stay tuned.

Wait, when did this happen? (ABC/Ron Koeberer)

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