Tintin the Belgian boy reporter is a childhood favourite of mine and an inspiration for my ventures into journalism. For me he is a pioneer of adventure reporting. He was my first journalist role model. He is also my reason for having a strong passion to travel to Belgium one day apart from love of chocolate.
Long before my lecturers at Swinburne University, he introduced me to journalism. I was introduced back in 1993 when i was still in primary school. ABC television gave me Tintin as it was through them that i got to discover him. I never read the books despite my love of reading. I connected more with him through TV.
I still remember being glued to the television set for the screening at 6 pm on weekdays. My mother would be nearby in the kitchen cooking and i could smell the wonderful aromas. If dinner was ready she would bring it to me and i would eat whilst watching Tintin. The episodes only went for half an hour which would go by so fast. Often many of the stories were in two parts so I had to wait the following night to see the conclusion. This was torture if it was the weekend as i had to wait for Monday.
I must say despite my love for him i still wanted to become an archaeologist and not a reporter at that stage. I had a strong desire to explore ancient cultures. Its only been the past few years that i have decided to explore journalism.
Tintin’s creator Herge had a strong love of travel and history, including archaeology. Hence he made his character embark on many travel adventures and some of archaeology. Tintin’s visit to Egypt in the Cigars of the Pharaoh and his visit to the bottom of the ocean in Red Rackham’s Treasure are good examples of archaeology. Long before me, Herge combined these disciplines. I take my hat off to him!
I believe if Tintin was created in the digital age, Herge would have been reporting Tintin’s adventures online and even blogging away.