On this day 35 years ago, Tuesday 2nd January 1979, my career as a reporter with RTÉ News began in the newsroom in Dublin. I had returned in December 1978 to Ireland from England, where I had worked for the BBC for nearly five years in London and Birmingham.
The Met Éireann records show that the lowest air temperature recorded in the 20th century was -18.8°C at Lullymore, Co. Kildare on that day. I can remember being assigned to do a radio report about the weather conditions, which were causing severe transport difficulties such as the cancellation of ferries. I remembered to include the Northern element, namely the sailings from Larne to Stranraer (as the two shipping companies then served). The detail of my reporting was subsequently praised by the editorial committee that met to review news coverage.
I joined RTÉ News on the same day as Conor Fennell, author of a book on ‘James Joyce in Paris’ (June 2011).
Today was a very different day. The weather was much better, with clouds and sunshine and a temperature reaching 8°C.