It’s been an exciting week leading up to the transmission of the programme. I was photographed by the Sunday World this morning (but I managed to keep my top on, phew!) and we’ve heard word that the programme might feature in the Belfast Telegraph and Sunday Times this weekend as well. It was a bit surreal to open up the Radio Times and see my story in the TV listings… (right)
The trailer for the Dockumentary has been running on UTV already. And the time-slot it has been given – following Downton Abbey (or Downtown Abbey, as I reckon all Belfast people should call it) is about as good as it gets – loads of people will be in front of their TVs, cups of cocoa in hand, hopefully ready to watch just one more programme before it’s time for bed.
There is one bit of the programme that I feel I should give a heads-up about – and an apology. I try to be as open and honest as possible on this blog, but there never seemed to be a good time or way to share one particular piece of news from the past year. During the boat-hunting, Titanic-centenary-commemorating, Dock-Cafe-opening adrenaline rush of events, Susan and I received some bad news in the middle of it all – we were both given a diagnosis of MS (Multiple Sclerosis). (We managed to be something of a medical marvel by both being given the same diagnosis in the same week.)
I’m one of the extremely fortunate people who lives with the diagnosis but none of the symptoms, so my daily life isn’t affected. (And there’s every chance that will continue to be the case). But the news in the middle of such a whirlwind year was a bit of a gut-punch. And, good interviewer that she is, Patricia, the director of the documentary, managed to get me to open up on camera about how it felt!
So you’ll see that it’s part of the story of the Dock as told in Mission Titanic on Sunday night… one aspect of a year I’ll never forget. A year in which bad news and unimaginable, unexpected blessing came out of nowhere – and in which God was equally present in both.