But how I came to share a pillow case with a well-known auto-writer and on-air personality is a story that started out innocently enough.
I was scheduled to drive the glorious 2012 Porsche Panamera Turbo S over the holiday season. Unlike most of the large manufacturers whose press fleets are distributed from a huge factory parking lot, the Porsche cars are managed by just one man, who often delivers them to points all over Ontario and Quebec.
I came to know and admire Rick Bye, a Rothman's Cup champion who boasts the highest number of laps around Mosport of any race driver in history, during last year's Porsche Cayenne drive across Alaska. So when asked if I could help out by ferrying him in between the car he was dropping off and the one I was to collect, I didn't hesitate.
The problem? What to do with my own car, a humble yet indispensable ‘92 Mazda I dubbed my "leave-behind" since it spends most of its days parked in factory lots all over Metro.
"No problem," he said. "I'll take it home with me."
Surreal might best describe the experience of watching one of Canada's best-known racers drive away in my $900 beater, while I held the keys to a $209,000 German luxury car.
The cabin of the Porsche Panamera is indeed a very fine place to be. Replete with plump, fragrant, hand-stitched leather culled from fat Austrian cows grazed in wire-free, bug-free Alpine meadows, the cockpit's a study in crème brûlée.
|2012 Porsche Panamera Turbo S (Photo: Lesley Wimbush/Auto123.com)|
Aesthetically satisfying though the expanse of butterscotch carpet may have been, I nonetheless viewed it with dismay. Schlepping my winter crud-encrusted boots onto that pristine territory seemed somehow verboten, and of course, I'd forgotten my extra set of mats in my beater. The rest of the week I made do with a series of old but clean bath towels placed carefully beneath the pedals.
I'd already made car-exchanging arrangements with the illustrious Jim K., thus saving Porsche-man Rick yet another trip. It had been a filthy, sloppy snow and sleet-filled week, and I gave the Panamera a thorough going over to ensure it was immaculate. Heading out the door, I realized that all the towels were filthy, and quickly grabbed the next best thing: a pink pillowcase.
Our rendez-vous at Fourbucks coffee shop twixt here and there, we exchanged cars and went on our merry ways — I completely oblivious that I'd forgotten my unorthodox floor covering until I received a text that said merely, "Rosebud???"
All good things must come to an end, and so did my time spent with Zuffenhausen's finest.
Reluctantly, I returned the Porsche and, sighing deeply, clambered into my leave-behind.
There on the seat, clean and neatly folded, was my pink pillowcase.