Probably it is the cold weather that makes brains numb and dysfunctional – the average Austrian would definately never have the idea to organize a four-weekend long outdoor festivals during a time of the year where your spit freezes in mid-air. Well, the Canadians do have ideas like that.

Igloofest is the name of this musical event that is basically like a huge poolparty. Instead of a pool next to the dancing crowd there is the frozen river tough, instead of bikinis hot girls wear fat winter jackets and woolen hats, instead of Coca Cola the nonalcoholics tend to drink hot chocolate, and instead of lampoons and garden torches huge ice sculptures and homeless-style barrels with raging fire coming out of them are placed inmidst the chillout-section.

For us mortal people, the time span for chillout is short – as soon as you take your gloves off, you are done, and as soon as you rest, you will get cold like the ice sculptures around you. I try cautiously to lick them and am now a bliever too that you will stick to it as if someone would have glued your tongue onto the frozen iglu-like objects.
The only way to keep yourself warm is by dancing fast, a lot, and in the tight wobbling of the crowd. Minus twenty-two degrees. I spit on one of the ice sculptures, the spit dangles down – and gets pretty stiff before it falls to the floor.

I am there with Chris, my colleague at the KFF, and Stefan, the Austrian who works at the Montreal Holocaust Museum. They buy beer, I get a  quite hot chocolate. After five minutes my little plastic cup is empty and I am as cold as I was before. Chris hints at me to drink from his beer. This time I don’t just feel bitter carbonated liquid rushing down my digestive tract – this time, solid pieces of frozen beer have joined.
Five minutes, and you beer freezes from within. Another time, I get a coke with ice cubes inside – and the coke gets so cold that instead of the icecubes melting, the coke around the ice cubes becomes cola ice – an extra bonus to lick off.


At some point everybody is dancing like crazy, I guess around 300 people (150 more are in a warm hall which is about 30 seconds from the outside dancefloor, and people start to surf the crowd. There is a guy with a sombrero, a guy with a pink afro-wig, some girl with an Austrian alpine rescue outfit … and then there’s some guy in a grey jacket, brown-blue jeans with ripped off bottom seams and once-been beautiful brown leather shoes thrown over the heads of the dancing herd.
I have no idea where I am flying, under me the warm breath and the body heat rising up, on top of me the icy air sinking down on us, in the middle, where the temperatures fight for domination, I get pushed and thrown. Crowdsurfing is awesome.
“Get that guy down!”, someone shouts, and I feel two hands grabbing my shoulders, pulling me over the bending bodies of a couple of people, and more or less softly, I hit the ground. Such a good feeling to crowdsurf, even if its so cold your pee freezes on the house wall where you painted it.

For the fine occasion, I of course dressed to impress:

  1. My fine pair of socks
  2. Another pair of socks
  3. Third pair of socks to keep the other two from stinking
  4. Boxers
  5. Karate pants, stuffed inside my socks
  6. Jeans
  7. T-Shirt
  8. Sweater
  9. Second sweater with hoodie (for gangster look if required)
  10. Fat snowboard jacket
  11. Ridiculously thin gloves

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