After a season of traveling through the heartland of our great country it was time for exotic dates. I can't think of a place more exotic than Bali. The travel from Iowa was no joke. We had to make our way to Los Angeles, and then we caught a short little flight over to Hong Kong. After a nice layover in Hong Kong we connected over to the Island of Bali. The trip was long and not so exotic, but once we arrived to the island it was all worthwhile. We were based out of the beautiful Mulia Resort right on the beach in Denpasar, Bali.
Just a little behind-the-scenes information for you: Once we get to hometowns the show is no longer about the women being together and going on group dates. At this point we just want Chris and the ladies to concentrate on each other and nothing else. To help this effort, everybody travels separately at different times, and the women don't see each other until the rose ceremony.
Chris's first date in Bali was with Kaitlyn. We all know how this week turned out for Kaitlyn and I'll get to her exit later, but first I want to look at her relationship with Chris. All along Kaitlyn and Chris have had an easy relationship, but that relationship just seemed to stop at a certain point. I found it interesting that Kaitlyn said she didn't have any questions at all about their relationship, because it certainly didn't feel like that to watch them. They were very comfortable around each other and I know they cared about each other very much, but it just didn't seem to compare to the feelings Chris had for the other women. If you had just been watching Chris and Kaitlyn you might think Chris was a nut for letting her go, but when you see the way he is around the other women you can see Chris and Kaitlyn don't quite have the same chemistry.
Chris's second date was with Whitney. While there are still questions to be answered, these two just melt into each other. They seem to really respect and care about each other. The chemistry thing is something I talk about every season and it's really tricky because it's an intangible that's hard to explain, but you know it when you see it. These two have that chemistry. Later at dinner, one thing that really stood out to me was the incredibly serious conversation Chris and Whitney had about moving to Arlington, Iowa. You can tell this is a touchy subject for Chris and he didn't gloss over it at all.
A little inside info about the boat trip Whitney and Chris took: It was windy and the seas were rough that day, my friends. They were supposed to cruise around to a beach and enjoy a nice day, but they never made it to the final destination. As you saw at one point Chris and Whitney jumped in the water off the front of the boat. The current was so strong they were at the back of the boat pretty much as soon as they hit the water. They even struggled to get out of the water as the ladder on the back kept rising out of the water in the big waves. It wasn't exactly the most romantic boat trip as some of our crew were getting sick in the rough seas.
Becca probably had the most interesting date this week. I'm not sure you know this because she didn't mention it at all, but Becca is a virgin. Obviously the fact that she's a virgin weighs heavily on her, and she was really struggling until she told Chris. But what really stands out to me about Becca is her inexperience in love and how that affects Chris. Becca is having feelings for Chris, she thinks she's falling in love, but to be honest she doesn't really know because she's never been in love before. She's feeling these things for the first time in her life. Is that sweet and romantic, or is it a scary thing for a 30-year-old man to hear?
I take great delight in writing the fantasy suite cards but this one was extra special. I really do like the social and personal dilemma these cards present. It forces a moment and a conversation two people falling in love need to have. Becca needed to tell Chris she's a virgin. As is usually the case, telling someone the truth and getting it off your chest is never as bad as you imagine it will be. I think Becca made such a big deal out of it, by the time she told Chris he was relieved that her news was just that she's a virgin.
Chris and Becca had a rough finish to their time in the suite and Chris left not knowing where their relationship stood. By the time I talked to Chris the day of the rose ceremony he was an emotional mess. Chris is usually pretty confident and secure in his decisions but not on this day. I could tell something was weighing heavily on his heart and mind.
The rose ceremony was held in the Samuan Tiga temple a couple hours away from our resort up in the Bedulu village. This was a beautiful temple and we were really honored that we were allowed to shoot there. To do so, we had to be very careful to respect the traditions of this historic place. We had several locals there with us at all times to make sure we were always following their customs and traditions. I love this part of my job. Experiencing and getting to know all the cultures around the world is an education you just can't get in any book.
Now let's get to the rose ceremony and Chris's decision to say goodbye to Kaitlyn.
I really think it came down to the fact that Chris just wants there to be something serious with Becca and he's willing to risk everything to find out if there is. I could tell when I talked to Chris that he was torn, but deep down I knew he wasn't. He was just having trouble justifying his decision. He truly cared about Kaitlyn and at that moment he'd just had a better experience with her than he did with Becca. But this is where that crazy word "chemistry" rears its ugly head. Chris couldn't articulate what he was feeling but I could see he just wasn't prepared to say goodbye to Becca — he just wants it to work with her so bad. When he pulled Becca aside at the rose ceremony you could see they both really care for each other and neither wanted to say goodbye. In the end, this meant that Kaitlyn was the odd woman out. There was nothing wrong with their relationship, but Chris felt there was just more "right" with the other two.
Next week is the Women Tell All special and then on March 9, it's the three-hour live finale event you won't want to miss. Speaking of must-see TV, the Women Tell All special next Monday will be one for the ages: Kaitlyn, both Ashleys (I. and S.), Britt, Carly and yes, even Kelsey will be back to take a turn in the hot seat in front of all the other women for the first time. See you then!
The Bachelor airs Mondays at 8 p.m. on ABC.