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Monday March 13, 2006 4:31 pm

Survivor: Panama: Salvation and Desertion

Survivor Panama ShaneThe members of Casaya return back to camp after their first tribal council in some time.  Shane is still reeling from the decision that the women made to vote Bobby off that night instead of Bruce.  While Bruce is within earshot, Shane lashes out at Danielle in their sleeping quarters and berates her for making a bad decision.  He tells Danielle that he wants out of the alliance because the girls are disorganized.  Danielle thinks he’s a lunatic who’s lost his mind and she decides that she doesn’t need him bashing her anymore.  Since Courtney was not present to hear Shane’s outbursts,  Cirie takes the pleasure of alerting her the next morning to her intentions.  After learning of the news, Courtney proposes kicking Shane out next time and gets Danielle on board.  Later, Shane tells the ladies that while he would break the alliance, he unfortunately swore on his son’s name to stick with them.  The woman make it easy for him (and themselves) and absolve him of his promise.  Meanwhile,  Cirie gets to sit back and laugh while the alliance apparently starts to deteriorate.

Back at La Mina, the tribe members have long forgotten their recent victory and have started obsessing on other issues.  Sally, the lone female member, is struggling with the cocky boys club that remains, while Austin is desperately longing for some food.  As for Dan, he’s still wrestling with the secret that he’s been harboring from the beginning—that he is a former astronaut.  This ‘secret’ had been eating him up for so long (approx. a whole 14 days) that for some random reason, he decided that this was the time for him to open up.  Not that he should have ever needed to keep this a secret—but why tell now??  What could he possibly gain by telling anyone?  More Importantly—why did he think that anyone would care in the first place?  Was he afraid that his abilities to launch into space would be seen as an unfair advantage on a deserted island??

When the tribes met again for their next Tribal Challenge. La Mina was shocked to see that Casaya had voted off Bobby.  Could the loss of strength on the opposing team give La Mina the chance to win a coveted BBQ feast?  Quite possibly.  But first they’d have to get through—let the drum roll, please—another skull puzzle challenge!!!  But before the contest can begin, the teams are given big news:  not only will the loser of the challenge miss out on a hearty feast, they will also go straight to Tribal Council that evening.  Needless to say there were big stakes involved and the competition was unsurprisingly fierce throughout.  Casaya appeared to be on the verge of another loss when Shane, Aras and Danielle struggled through their respective legs of the race.  Dan and Sally were handed a sizable La Mina lead when they were finally able to assort their puzzle pieces.  Unfortunately, despite his engineering background, Dan could not get his head around the board’s configuration.  Bruce and Cirie pounced on Dan’s inabilities and took the lead away from La Mina.  In the end, Casaya won the Tribal and Immunity Challenge.  Rubbing salt in their wound, the Casaya tribe chose to send Sally to Exile Island.  This would force the men of La Mina to kick off one of their own men at Tribal Council that night.

While the La Mina members were busy licking their wounds, the members of Casaya were busy gorging on chicken, soup and rice.  Making their reward particularly delightful, the winners were able to eat their food with actual members of the Panamanian civilization.  Not only were they able to leave their own camp, but the Casaya members were actually able to converse and socialize with people they were not competing against.  And more importantly for Shane, he was able to revisit nicotine once again.  After partaking in a bummed cigarette and soulful food, Shane tries to make nice with his estranged alliance members once again.  Danielle and Courtney act like they forgive him—but did they really?  I guess we won’t know until they are once again at Tribal Council.  In the meantime, Cirie will have to wonder as to whether or not the powerful alliance was really fractured after all.

Back at La Mina, the road the to Tribal Council was pretty smooth and anti-climatic.  Given the options for the chopping block—it was clear from the get-go who would be voted off.  With Terry, Nick, Austin still remaining, Dan was the obvious choice.  While some may say that he was targeted for being old, he was also the fair choice for the week given his performance at the Tribal Challenge.  At least Terry was nice enough to keep up his end of the bargain and forewarned Dan about his plans.  Although Dan did put up some resistance, he wasn’t surprised.  And neither were we.


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