A 78-year-old Mexican man has become a YouTube cooking star after the coronavirus pandemic forced him to stay at home.
“This has been a boom. I try to make people have fun, that’s what’s most important to me,” said Carlos Elizondo Frias, who is known by his 420,000 subscribers as Tito Charly.
Most of his nine YouTube videos show him working in his kitchen, making dishes such as dried meat, grilled cheese, sausages and hotcakes.
The joyful videos, in which he once even breaks into a dance, have received 1.3 million visits on YouTube.
The widowed father of three daughters and grandfather of six had been an entrepreneur all his life.
He had a transport company and then dedicated himself to providing electricity to buildings under construction.
After Elizondo retired and his daughters married, he took a job as a packer at a supermarket to keep company with other elderly people working there and to earn a couple of extra pesos.
But when the coronavirus hit, the elderly packers – who are among the most at risk – were sent home, and Elizondo suddenly had nothing to do.
“I’m so active that in just a moment I had cleaned the whole house,” Elizondo told dpa from Monterrey, 900 kilometres north of Mexico City.
His youngest daughter, Veronica, and her son had the idea of a YouTube channel and Elizondo started appearing in videos shot partly by Veronica, whose voice can sometimes be heard in the background.
“He likes the good life. I remember that since I was little, he liked to make people happy,” the 47-year-old daughter said.
For the time being, Elizondo is only putting out a video every Sunday, but he says he may start publishing another one during the week due to the high demand.
The YouTube channel has also helped family friends who use it to market their home-made sausages, cheese, and marmelade.
Surprised by his success, Elizondo does not yet know what he’ll do when the pandemic subsides.
“Whatever will come. However things develop. I don’t particularly want to grow – what I care about is having fun,” he said. (dpa/NAN)