The woman who kept her cool as airport shut over snowmageddon

Sinead Ryan

The snow has made some jobs really unenviable. Mr Whippy can't be doing much business and anyone selling suntan lotion has probably shut up shop too.

But there's no doubt that this week -- indeed this year -- the worst job has to be the one cheerfully and professionally executed by Siobhan Moore.

The spokeswoman for the Dublin Airport Authority has become as familiar as any of our weather presenters, better known than our newscasters and has invaded everybody's living room at least once a day since snowmageddon began.

Before that, it was the volcanic ash cloud when we thought air travel really couldn't get any worse. We were wrong. Up popped Siobhan to tell us why.

Would you do it? Seriously? The girl looks as if she has been camping at the airport since the start of December -- in sympathy with so many of the public forced to do the same.


She hasn't even had time for Christmas shopping -- unless it involves nipping down to The Loop between broadcasts.

I wouldn't blame her for knocking back a few bottles of duty-free gin as she goes. I'd consider it an essential tool of the trade.

She may even have to eat her festive dinner in the Skyview Bar as the airport stays plans to stay open for at least some of Christmas Day.

She is the face of the DAA -- that nameless bunch of State-appointed apparachiks -- Michael O'Leary is its greatest nemesis -- he's always whingeing about what they're doing wrong, how much they're spending and why he thinks they're defunct. No sign of Mr O'Leary this week when the snow hit the fan, though. Instead we had to rely on the people running the airport, dealing with the snow and ice and the thousands of stranded passengers and Ms Moore hit the nail on the head.

The DAA is a vast organisation. You wouldn't know any of the people running it, save for one Mr Bill Cullen, who is on the board. Bill -- never mind your next Apprentice -- I daresay you should snap up Siobhan to run the whole damn company for you.

She's been pitching up on the news (all of them) to tell us depressing news which runs along the now familiar lines of, "Nothing's flying. Something's flying. Nope, they're all grounded again".

The DAA turned over €547m last year. Siobhan wouldn't be the highest paid member of staff as they can't even seem to run to buying her a woolly hat.

I'd say there are days when she'd love to shove herself to the top of a queue - any queue - and get on the first plane out of the place. But instead she stays calm and efficient and reassuring. And that's the trick. When you can't do a damn thing, make sure everyone knows you really, really wish you could.