January 29, 2013 at 06:05 AM EST

So, like many blogs before this one, I’m writing this at approximately thirty thousand feet. I give you this disclaimer because as I look back on my blogs I find that something about writing these at cruising altitude makes them decidedly different. Not sure if it’s the lack of oxygen getting to my brain or the fact that I always listen to music as I write that gives these high altitude blogs a little edge. Right now I’m feeling a little sentimental because Gloriana’s “Kiss You” is on, so let’s roll with that.

Selma, who we really haven’t gotten to see that much of yet, got the first date. Emotions are running incredibly high this season, honestly a little higher than usual. Because of this, who gets dates really impacts the dynamic in the house. The date with Selma started out super sexy but then turned incredibly rugged. I credit Selma for delivering the money line of the season so far when she said Sean “took the Iraqi to the desert.” Selma, who’s apparently not the outdoorsy type, started out a little rough, and in her words, puffy, but boy did she rally. Joshua Tree National park was an incredible backdrop for this date, and Sean was truly impressed with how Selma dove right in and got dirty with him. It’s important that these girls can show him how they can step out of their comfort zones and embrace what life has to offer beyond six-inch heels.  

There was a lot of sexual chemistry between the Selma and Sean and as a result, she had to explain that due to her beliefs and her background she couldn’t kiss him. This brings up an incredibly interesting social discussion. Selma wanted to kiss Sean and she really doesn’t necessarily seem to believe that dating out loud is wrong, nor is kissing. But she felt compelled, out of respect for her parents and their beliefs, to refrain from kissing Sean. I’ll be interested to hear your thoughts on this. Is living like this going to be something that Selma ultimately regrets? Only the individual can make that judgment calls for herself, and this is the path Selma’s chosen for right now. Sean, to his credit, very much respected her decision and completely understood. Ironically it probably only made her more attractive, but at some point, will that change? Like his other dates, Selma really seems like she could be the one for Sean, but then again, that’s how almost every date feels with this guy.

The group date was interesting, to say the least. I put the roller derby idea right up there with the Muay Thai boxing date during Ashley’s season in Chiang Mai. Sure, it seems like a good idea, but once you realize everyone’s just getting hurt, it becomes less sexy. One good thing about these dates is you get to really see what people are made of and how they handle stressful situations. You also get to see how tough their jaws are. Everybody took some big spills but Amanda really came crashing down. Fortunately her jaw broke her fall. She was banged up pretty good and had to go make sure she didn’t actually fracture her jaw. Luckily she returned later in the date, but sadly, she’ll never play the harmonica the same again.

One thing that no one expected was how hard skating would be for Sarah. Everyone, especially Sean, was really sensitive to her and wanted to make sure she didn’t feel excluded for any reason, but also felt comfortable with the activity. It was nice to see her get so much support from the other girls and Sarah once again proved herself to be a very, very strong woman.

NEXT PAGE: Tierra the “scary hobo goblin”

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