Carrof, fruit and nut loaf! | Peter Clover


I think I’ve got Rabbit Hutch Syndrome! I think I might also have just made that condition up, but I’ve definitely got it!

Now that Covid19 restrictions have been lifted slightly and front doors have finally and legally been flung wide, instead of racing out into the mêlée to embrace this much welcomed freedom, I am peering out at my immediate world, cautiously, from the back of my hutch! I have even taken to crunching nervously on raw carrots whilst contemplating my next move.

Luckily, my burrow has a nice back garden to hang out in, so I’m not missing the big outdoors that much. But the garden doesn’t lead anywhere! The front door however, well that’s a different heart banging matter altogether! Just down the street and around the corner is the epicentre of our small town, replete with its plaças and bars which now have tables set out at the appropriate distancing, beckoning the less fearful to come sit and imbibe. I was under the impression that the government had made it mandatory for face masks to be worn by ALL shop assistants and bar staff offering a public service! But as this instruction is NOT being followed to the letter, then Rabbit Hutch Syndrome is telling me that this could represent danger, like a poacher’s snare! And the appearance of anyone suddenly popping out of a doorway is enough to send me bolting back to the security of my hutch. Phew! That was a close call!

But this paranoia has got to stop! I’ve got to be brave and get back into the swing of living a relatively normal life, or I shall end up sitting at the back of my hutch forever. Unlike some people who are behaving as if this new found freedom means the virus has gone, I am still being very cautious, maintaining the correct hygiene procedures, and observing the safe distance protocol at all times. Yet when I see others around me completely ignoring the two metre distancing, I can’t help feeling vulnerable and concerned. Perhaps I am being over cautious? I don’t know. But I do know that it’s not a good thing to let fear overwhelm me to such an extent that I will end up growing floppy ears and start hopping everywhere.

I am totally relaxed when interacting with same, like-minded individuals, who go about their business respectfully whilst considering others. It’s only when rogue rebels invade my space and don’t follow the correct protocol that I panic and act like a rabbit caught in the headlights. It’s all very well having this ‘bravado’ attitude which some Majorcans are now adopting, but it won’t get our island back to normal any quicker! Consideration of safety to others must always be a priority to stop a pending spike of this virus. If certain individuals aren’t bothered about their immediate selves, then they should at least have some common decency and respect for others around them who ARE concerned and DO care about protection protocol. But then I suppose trying to tell some Majorcans what to do is like trying to open a crab’s arse with a bus ticket!

I understand totally that our island society is desperate to throw a party and get things back to normal, both socially and economically, but small, slow bunny hops are going to prove more effective in the long run than a brazen ‘back as we were before’ attitude, carrying on blindly as if nothing has happened!

It’s very encouraging for someone with Rabbit Hutch Syndrome to see that other countries are slowly testing the ground and recording positive results. A few places are actually being reported as almost virus free, which gives me great hope for the future.

Outside of Majorca, my favourite holiday island is undoubtedly Mauritius, another idyllic isle basking in the Indian Ocean, just off the coast of West Africa. Similar in size to Majorca (well it’s a little bit smaller, actually) yet with a larger population of 1,264,866 people against Majorca’s 896,038, the indigenous population of Mauritius is a melting pot of blended cultures and religions which all come together in harmony as one race, living with total respect for each others differences. We have been to Mauritius many times and the people there never cease to amaze us with their positive, spiritual attitude and their genuine love and respect for their island, as well as each other. Happy bunnies everywhere!

The island of Mauritius has just been declared virus free! We keep in touch with many friends in Mauritius and understand that their success has come about because from day one, the entire population has had total respect for their government’s lockdown policy, and no huge egos have flouted the rules or got in the way of social distancing and correct protocol in public areas.

Similar to Majorcans, the Mauritians also like outdoor living, social engagements and regularly gatherings in groups with friends and family. Some have quite large families embracing a mix of generations, and their homes are generally much smaller than those here in Majorca. Yet, even with this wonderful announcement that their island has survived, and is virus free, they are still consciously respecting the safe distance protocol, staying at home, and using technology to chat with friends rather than rushing out to recklessly celebrate and socialise. Their concern for their elderly, their families and each other, along with friends and total strangers around them is remarkable, and their patience has been the foundation stone of their success in battling Covid19.

When their government told them to observe protocol, the Mauritians simply did it gently without question or compromise. There was no ‘don’t tell me what to do’ mentality or blind ignorance of the science and facts. They are not a subservient culture or living under any fascist dictatorship, so their obedience was sensible and voluntary. The Mauritians are one of the few cultures in the world who practice their true and solid belief in happiness through harmony. Their society is based on kindness, and respect for others. They are not as completely advanced medically in Mauritius as they are here in Majorca, but their compliance with their government’s strategy of isolation and safe distancing during their own current Covid crisis has obviously worked! What a pity the same mentality, strength of solidarity and commitment is not being applied by everyone here, even though they preach it!

It has become quite obvious that some Majorcans across the island just can’t be told or controlled. Hopefully, they are the minority! But looking at all the reports coming in, along with the necessity for police now having to supervise people taking a coffee in bars, I’m seriously beginning to wonder! Meanwhile, I’m concentrating on the light at the end of the tunnel, and happy to spend the day at home baking a bunnie’s favourite -delicious carrot, fruit and nut loaf to have with a nice, calming cup of tea!


Whisk 120ml of good olive oil with 150g light brown sugar (or regular) in a large bowl. Whisk in 2 egg yolks (save whites for later) along with 2tbsp freshly squeezed orange juice. Fold in 90g grated raw carrot, 60g chopped walnuts and 60g raisins. Sift and stir into mixture 120g plain flour with 1 heaped tsp baking powder, ½ tsp ground ginger, ½ tsp ground cinnamon and ½ tsp mixed spice. Now whisk your 2 egg whites in separate bowl, and when light and fluffy fold gently into cake mixture. Transfer to a lined and greased 1.3 litre capacity (that’s 2lb) loaf tin. I like to use a long thin tin, then dust top of mixture generously with white sugar and bake at 180C for around 50 mins until an inserted knife comes out clean and there’s a slight crust on top. Keep stored wrapped in tin foil in an airtight tin. It gets better as the days pass if you don’t eat it all in one go!