The reason that I wanted to come back for SURVIVOR: ALL-STARS was not the million dollars. It was not the money at all. It was to finish my adventure, to finish my journey that I had started in SURVIVOR: PEARL ISLANDS and had not truly finished. I started a journey inside myself of self-awareness, of self-improvement, of realization of who I truly am.
I came into SURVIVOR: PEARL ISLANDS still believing I was that worthless little kid that I was always told I was, and I left almost believing that that was still true. I understood why I believed that in SURVIVOR: PEARL ISLANDS, but I couldn't kick the fact that I still felt like a failure. I had so many "should, coulda, wouldas" that when I got the call to say, "Do you want to do ALL-STARS?" there was not more than two seconds hesitation before I said, "Of course." And then I hang up the phone, and I try to explain to my wife and my daughter that yes, I'm just back, and yes, I said I wasn't leaving again, but I'm going to finish my journey.
Probably by day 19 I had realized there is no need to be that scary-ass person who pushed people away any more. It started on the second day when we came out and Saboga was left till last. I was in the back of the row of Saboga coming out, and I hear people saying, "That's Rupert." The people that I idolized saying, "That's Rupert." The people that I would have stood in line for hours to get their autographs saying, "That's Rupert."
I walk away from SURVIVOR: ALL-STARS knowing I played the game with honor, I played it against the best of the best, I didn't play conniver, and I made it to the Final Four. I walk away feeling very good about my game.