It's gone midnight, -20c and Geilo is deep in snow. A lovely press dinner evening at the Bardøla Hotel has just finished, with taxis on their way to take journalists, a film crew and core Ice Music Festival posse back to their beds.
Bill, Helder, Wolfgang Gehrmann (senior business editor from Die Zeit newspaper in Germany) and I are waiting to share the same taxi. We've all hanging around the warm lobby and the banter is flowing effortlessly. Headlights shining into the lobby indicate our taxi's arrival; and we are surprised to see The Fixer at the helm of the steering wheel. Yep, he had returned in the shape of a taxi driver...roll on lots of warm greetings.
Now at this point, I'd like to mention that I've been assigned by both Die Zeit and the Financial Times of London to cover Ice Music Festival 2012 and with both their journalists in Geilo, I feel a little responsible that they receive a warm welcome and good impression of the town and it's people.
New readers unaware of The Fixer - please read here.
After The Fixer's out of control pyrotechnic craziness last year, I suddenly have a gut feeling that all hell is going to break loose. We all jump into The Fixer's spanking brand new Mercedes estate, laden with enough controls and gadgets strewn across it's dashboard to pass off as Darth Vader's bathroom. I introduce Wolfgang to The Fixer and we set off.
As soon as we leave the lobby area and with a stark absence of any warning; The Fixer puts his foot to the floor and spins the steering wheel into the biggest power slides, covering the full width of the high snow banked road, regardless of the sharp bends or steep incline. We absolutely crack up.
We get down the mountain at break neck speed and the hit the main road like a scene re-enactment from The Getaway. The Fixer then pulls the sharpest left turn in Ralliart history and flies into a huge, empty lorry park knee deep in snow - chaos reigned. The next few minutes were a total blur of snow and laughter as the car repeatedly spun around and around and around; 360 doughnuts after 360 doughnuts, until we were dizzy.
All sense or illusion of responsibility completely shattered, we all rolled out of The Fixer's cab and headed back to our apartments.
Wolfgang had officially experienced The Fixer.