In Switzerland for two weeks holiday after a long year of production on our new feature film, Despite the Falling Snow, I took a long, morning walk.
Picking my way across black ice on the tarmac road outside the chalet took some time, but within 15 minutes I felt the satisfying, crisp crunch of thicker snow beneath my boots. On each side, slopes of pine trees soared upwards, their branches dusted with ice as delicate as powdered sugar. Tiny waterfalls trickled down through moss that still glowed softly green through the snow, small icicles forming amongst the water like tiny diamond fields. The air was crisp and pure and with that hard cold that sweeps away all the stress and tiredness of a long year.
Two hours later, the boys returned with Hanan from a morning of skiing. I tried to explain to our eldest, Ethan, about the wonder of the walk I’d had, how I wished he had been there (despite his aversion to walking any further than the fridge looking for snacks) He looked at me curiously.
‘Why?’ he asked.
‘Why bother walking? You know you can stream 4K videos of mountains on Netflix on our 65” Direct LED with a 7.1 Dolby Digital Surround gaming headset, for free at home…’
I wrote it off as teenage hubris till later today Luca looked out of the window with me and saw the setting sun glancing off the side of the white capped mountains above us.
‘Wow,’ he said, and I nodded, pleased.
‘Isn’t that amazing?’ I affirmed.
He looked at me, awestruck. ‘It looks just like an iOS screensaver!’
No trace of irony, I noted, but it was high praise from the younger generation. Nature, after all, might just be as good – or dare I say it, better – than the digital version….