There’s no place like home — most of the time. On the Monday, July 17, episode of The Bachelorette, Rachel Lindsay headed off to four hometown dates before sending one suitor packing. As far as hometown dates go, this was an eventful set, though it’s safe to say that some went better than others.
From Baltimore With Love… Err… Like
Eric and Rachel reunited in his hometown of Baltimore. The theme of the date was that Eric came from the wrong side of the tracks. “So this is the nice part of the city,” he said as he and Rachel cuddled on a park bench. “But this is not where I grew up.” He then drove her to the basketball court where he used to play. “They’re selling drugs right there,” he pointed out as they passed some shady looking guys on a street corner. Rachel didn’t comment directly on that, instead focusing on how excited she was to meet the people who were important to Eric.
They headed to Eric’s family’s house where Rachel met his mom, his dad, his “auntie” Verna, and about 20 other people. Verna asked Rachel, point-blank, about what it was like being the first black Bachelorette. Rachel said she “was getting judged by black people, and getting judged by everybody else.” Still, she insisted she was going to follow her heart because “love doesn’t have a color.”
Meanwhile, Eric had a heart-to-heart with his mom. “I always wanted you to be there in a certain way that you wasn’t,” Eric told her. His mom argued that she didn’t want to be a crutch and Eric thanked her for making him the man he is today.
“I really love this girl,” Eric told Rachel. “And let me tell you what that means. I care about you, like a lot.” Rachel noted that right after saying the L word, he said that meant he liked her a lot. She seemed less than thrilled with that qualification. Still, she said that she had strong feelings for Eric and seemed on cloud nine at the end of the day.
Rachel then headed to Miami to hang out with Bryan and his family. (As a refresh, Bryan’s mom broke up his last serious relationship.) Bryan promptly told his mom that he thought Rachel was the one, and his mom said he had met a lot of girls and she wasn’t sure why Rachel should be any different.
Bryan’s sister went on to tell Rachel that his last girlfriend was “threatened” by Bryan’s relationship with his mother. “She wanted him for himself and that was her demise,” Bryan’s sister explained. Rachel then sat down with Bryan’s mom to tell her that Bryan made her want to be a better person. His mom seemed relatively satisfied. “He’s the love of my life,” his mother explained to the camera.
Bryan then told Rachel he loved her. “Rachel, I’m in love with you. I don’t want to hold these feelings back anymore.” They made out some and she left about as giddy as she’s been all season. “I’m letting myself feel all the feels and it feels good,” she said.
Peter Can’t Say ‘I Love You’
Rachel was excited to see Peter in Madison, WI, but was worried that he wasn’t ready for a real commitment. Peter kicked things off by introducing Rachel to a group of his friends. He peeled off with some of the guys to get his friends’ perspective on whether it would be crazy for him to propose in three weeks – a prospect which he called “terrifying.” His friends seemed to think it was fine, which eased his nerves… a little. “I don’t make rash decisions,” he said to the camera. “That’s not me.”
The visit with his family went well. Rachel pretty much melted watching Peter with his niece. He told his mom he thought he was ready to get engaged, but he wasn’t sure. “I’m afraid I’ll still have my walls up and I’ll regret missing that opportunity.” During some girl time, Rachel asked Peter’s mom if he was ready for marriage. “Not necessarily,” his mom said. “To hear Peter’s mom say he is ready for a commitment, but not a proposal – that’s a big deal to me. I just don’t want a boyfriend at the end of this,” she said.
Dean Wasn’t Lying About His Dad
Rachel and Dean started their hometown date with an ATV ride followed by a romantic picnic in the countryside, but Dean was very nervous to introduce her to his father. His father’s name was Parumrup, which means “divinely beautiful.” Dean sighed and said, “It’s a self-given name, so that gives you some idea.”
Dean then revealed he hadn’t spoken to his father at all for over two years. When Rachel asked if he’d reached out, Dean said he didn’t think it was his responsibility to do that. Rachel suggested that Dean take this opportunity to tell his father that he wasn’t there for him.
“I am legitimately terrified,” Dean said as they walked up. His father kicked things off with some gong playing and then teared up when talking about Dean’s late mother. His father then pulled him aside and complimented him on how changed he seemed. Dean asked his dad if he thought he was “fulfilling things” as a father. Parumrup didn’t seem to follow. Dean then told his dad he had failed the kids after their mother died and his father admitted he was too “angry” to do the things he needed to do. Their conversation escalated into a fight. “You’ve still got one foot stuck in the past!” his dad said before storming out. Rachel tried to talk to Parumrup herself, but didn’t get very far. Dean finished off the evening by telling her he was “falling in love” with her.
And Then There Were Three
“This has been a very, very hard week for me,” Rachel said before handing out her roses. Bryan nabbed the first rose. Next was Eric. Finally came Peter, which meant Dean was going home. He was appropriately crushed, but polite.
Tell Us: Were you surprised Rachel sent Dean home?
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