You’ve heard the incessant cry, likely from your local vegan, that this pandemic is simply Mother Nature purging her planet of all the pollution. And in fairness, she’s been swamped in it since Rich Arkwright opened his mill down in Matlock and kick-started the Industrial Revolution. She has every right to complain.
The headlines celebrate that Venetians are seeing fish in their canals for the first time… like, ever. The Himalayan peaks are visible from 100 miles away. It’s almost as if our humble abode has had enough of all the bugs and glitches we’ve caused it over all these years and has finally opted to ‘Restore to Factory Settings’.
Perhaps we should follow Earth’s lead in trying to be her best self. And, despite the protest from the gap yahs, I have reason to believe that South East Asia isn’t the only location to revitalise your mind, body and soul. In fact, I’ve watched my sixteen-year-old brother transform within the four walls of our house.
Now, I’m not trying to say a state-enforced lockdown is beneficial for anyone, however my brother has managed to escape approximately twenty exams. And if GCSE Woodwork taught him anything, it’s how to waste time. These new conditions appeared perfect for him; plenty of time to chase the seemingly impossible Victory Royale.
However, much like Mother Nature, my brother has returned to his primal state. Though previously presenting as a wannabe roadman: spitting grime, necking Carling and sporting an Adidas hoody, nowadays he can be found with an apron round his neck, proudly parading his newest bake. Sometimes I double-take, genuinely convinced I’ve been locked up with Mary Berry.
Just like our friend Planet Earth, he’s ditching the bullshit and switching Carling for chamomile. It’s certainly not something to complain about. The boy can make a mean chocolate ganache and the presentation of his Victoria sponge was simply impeccable.
Ok, so it hasn’t been a total character change. You can still catch him on Red Dead Redemption frequently enough and his choice of kitchen listening is Skepta which I can only imagine isn’t quite to Mary’s taste. But lockdown has allowed a rare escape for many of his responsibilities. No longer tasked with the challenge of becoming his form tutor’s biggest nightmare, he’s turned his hand to cake creation. And kudos to him.