Nicola Adam column: Completely nuts but I hate attention

Nicola Adam, Group Editor
Nicola Adam, Group Editor
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Now, despite what everyone says I am not always comfortable with being the centre of attention.

It might be the Irish Catholicism in my blood via my dad, but the extremely shy child I once was still shows herself once in a while.

This insecure facet of my personality, regularly hidden while I undertake my weekly radio slot, give speeches at award ceremonies and meet high ranking VIPs, means my secretly desired career of a musical star or TV personality were over before they started.

It was also sorely tested during a recent visit to Mallorca via plane.

I shared in this column a year ago about my very real battle with a nut allergy which has built up over the years.

I got a huge wake up call when I accidently bit into a walnut bread roll at a snooty restaurant and ended up in anaphylactic shock.

This was serious stuff.

I was saved by a friend, a bike paramedic and the lovely doctors at a London hospital.

Since then I have carried an epipen everywhere I go - even on aircraft.

Previously I have been advised to send this lifesaving dose of adrenaline through the security scanners in my hand luggage.

But not this time.

With national security on red alert it set off every alarm in the airport, leaving me surrounded by burly uniformed staff and stared down by a police man with a rather large weapon.

Not to mention the crowds of partially clad-tourists pulling on their shoes and belts while watching the mini-drama.

But my humiliation was not yet complete.

Once on the plane, I rapidly sunk down in my seat when a cabin crew member announced this was to be a nut free plane.

I tried to close my ears to the muttering of families denied the joy of consuming airport purchased Toblerone, just so I wouldn’t die by exposure to their recirculated air.

An attention seeker, one passenger muttered, initially oblivious to my very close presence.

Once disembarked, he took great joy in opening a bumper pack of roasted peanuts then approaching me sarcastically with his nutty breath, ‘Alive then?’

I could have kicked him in the.....