For Sunday Miscellany on RTÉ Radio 1, John Egan recalls a radio reporting assignment of a lifetime - covering Italia 90 for The Pat Kenny Show in the glorious company of journalistic legend Nell McCafferty.
We had just been shown to our table and the waiter was about to get some menus, when my travelling companion piped up: "Vino Rosso Pronto, Per Favore!" she said, in the only Italian I would hear her use. It was clear than no menu would ever be looked at – before a calming glass of house wine had been served.
My new best friend was the renowned journalist, civil rights campaigner and feminist – Nell McCafferty. We had been sent to Italy to cover Ireland's pivotal World Cup game against Romania for the Pat Kenny Radio Show.
Like most people in Ireland 30 years ago, I knew Nell Mc Cafferty, but by reputation only. I was surprised to see that her luggage comprised two T-shirts, assorted underwear and a tootbrush which she carried in a squashed up plastic shopping bag. "What more do I need?" she said, "sure we’ll only be away for two days..."
Sunday Miscellany, RTÉ Radio 1, Sunday mornings at 9.10am - listen back here.