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'The Bachelorette Blog': Hometown dates, heartbreak in Episode 8

Four remaining men try to secure Des' love during hometown dates

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Hometown dates kicked off with a bang during Episode 8 of "The Bachelorette." The remaining four men threw caution out the door as they tried to secure Desiree's love.

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Zak W. scored the first hometown date and was eager to show her around Dallas. She was quickly thrown into the family business selling snow cones and feeding lots of eager children.

Then it was time to meet the family. It was instantly clear that Zak W. gets his personality from his mom. She immediately embraced Desiree, making her feel at ease. The dinner conversation was spirited and "The Bachelorette" genuinely seemed to enjoy herself. Tears filled her eyes, as his family serenaded her with one of his original songs.

At the end of the night, Zak presented Desiree with a ring. She was shocked, but accepted it with a smile. Sadly, this "Bachelorette" junkie was left wondering, if the experience was too overwhelming for her.

Drew and Desiree ran into each other's arms when she arrived in Scottsdale, Arizona for the second hometown date. They started their visit with an emotional introduction to his severely handicapped sister Melissa.

As this scene unfolded I literally turned into a pool of emotion on my couch. It was so beautiful to see how much compassion Drew had for his sister. I felt like it spoke volumes about his character.

The meet and greet with his family went better than Desiree could have expected. They welcomed her with open arms. His father even gave Drew his blessing to propose.

The overall vibe of this date was vastly different from the first. I often wondered if Drew had enough spunk and energy to keep up with Desiree, but after watching them together it was clear there was much more depth to the couple.

Desiree was swept off to McMinnville, Oregon to meet Chris's family for her third hometown date. They started their day throwing the baseball around on the field where he played little league. While Chris comes across as a sweet guy, I couldn't help but think they were boring together.

Since Chris had been in a bad relationship in the past, his family made sure to ask him lots of meaningful questions. The day wasn't without awkwardness, as his chiropractor father offered to give Desiree an adjustment. She was hesitant at first but went along with it.

In the end, his mother gave him her blessing. The evening ended with a romantic kiss and hug. I'm still on the fence about Chris. I was left wondering if he would be able to bring out her spontaneous side.

Brooks had the final hometown date. Their time in Salt Lake City, Utah began with doubt as Brooks questioned his feelings for Desiree. She shared with him a list of their special moments and was able to reassure him.

His big family welcomed them both and then the questions were on. After a heart to heart with his mother, it seemed his doubts were put to rest. He even got his mother's blessing to move forward with the relationship.

Then it was back to Los Angeles where Desiree had to decide which of the men would not receive a rose. She revealed there was one last person she had to speak to before she could make a decision, her brother Nate.

He became known as a "bad boy" during the last season of "The Bachelor" after a harsh conversation with Sean, during Desiree's hometown date. She was convinced Nate was the reason she was sent home.

After an intense conversation with her brother, Desiree decided he would not be questioning the remaining men. But Nate didn't leave right away. He mysteriously lurked in the shadows as the men arrived to the rose ceremony.

Tears filled Desiree's eyes as she handed out roses to Brooks, Chris and Drew. She walked Zak W. out and told him she could not keep the ring he gave her.

My heart broke for him. I was amazed he was able to keep a smile on his face. I couldn't imagine how tough that limo ride must have been. During his exit interview he described the situation by saying he felt numb.

It was clear he had fallen hard for Desiree. Then suddenly the limo pulled over and Zak W. through the ring he gave her out the window.

This season of "The Bachelorette" is winding down and next week all the men are back for a "The Men Tell All" reunion special. No doubt the claws will be out as the men try to set the record straight and settle scores.

Be sure and tune in Monday night at 7 p.m. on KSAT 12.


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