If you’re like me and miss travelling but aren’t ready to take off quite yet, I discovered how to satisfy that longing. And it doesn’t involve planes or trains. I got to see Dubai, Singapore, Beijing, India and more. How you might ask? By watching The Amazing Race. What a wild ride!
If you’re not familiar with The Amazing Race, it’s a fast-paced adventure reality show with multiple teams of two racing around the world. They complete and compete in challenging and often culture-specific tasks ranging from bungee jumping into caverns and off cliffs, to cooking and consuming local often exotic delicacies, to becoming familiar with foreign languages, flags and customs. Running (both the show and the contestants) since 2001, it took lockdown for me to discover it. Did I mention the winning team wins a million dollars?
It’s available on Amazon Prime and is the recipient of multiple Emmys in recognition of producers, directors, charismatic host Phil Keoghan and more. I have no idea how the producers organize challenges in countries around the world, from finding camel owners willing to allow participants to race, ride and milk them, to building managers inviting contestants to climb up their walls and down their skyscrapers. Drafting the liability waivers alone must take a full staff.
Watching the show’s teams travel to different countries is not as good as being there in person if you like to travel. But my eyes were happy seeing something other than my walls and lawn. And it is so fast paced that it’s impossible to think or worry as it engages and transports viewers.
There are 32 seasons so far, each with multiple episodes. That should be sufficient to get through the dog days of summer without channel surfing myself into a frenzy. I miss going places. But until I visit in person, I’m thankful The Amazing Race is available, reminding me of the joys of travel as it disconnects me from the mundane and reconnects me to the world.