Jack Tame: I came home for Hilary

Jack Tame. Photo / Supplied
Jack Tame. Photo / Supplied

I well remember my first shift on Breakfast.

I was 19, living at home, and it was exactly ten years ago in two weeks.

At 3.30am in Christchurch my 89' Honda City needed a manual choke to coax it into life. Dad made me put a tarp over the car to protect it from the frost, but I still had to fetch warm water and an ice-scraper before I could safely take the street.

I knotted my tie at the traffic lights, plonked a four-pack of V on the passenger seat and beeped a good morning to the prostitutes gathered near the old TVNZ office by Latimer Square.

It's funny how life comes full circle.

Tonight I'll reset my alarm for the same hour and the same program as I did in 2006. Still, in ten years, quite a bit has changed.

The cameraman who helped and guided me on that first morning, died a couple of years ago. The building where we worked by Latimer Square was destroyed in the February quake.

My 89' Honda City failed its warrant with something called 'pervasive rust.'

I'm nostalgic for those years; the mates I made on Breakfast and the freedom of the gig.

I loved that in the space of two or three hours of daily telly, we cycled through a bit of everything New Zealand. Serious, silly, and spontaneous, the cost of working on the best show in TV is the hours of the gig.

In the year or two before I started on Breakfast all those years ago, I'd been working as a DJ at twenty-first birthdays and primary school discos. I figured working on Breakfast was the best job in the World.

I still do.

I know it'll take time to settle into a rhythm. I'm sure we'll cop plenty of flak. But personally, aside from needing a change - I couldn't stand to report on another U.S massacre - and aside from missing home, there's an even greater reason I'm moving back from New York for Breakfast.

Her name's Hilary Barry and she rocks.

- NZ Herald

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