Early reviews of the new fun farm at Ballybeg in Brocagh have been unfavourable after Tyrone’s latest amenity opened its door to journalists before the grand opening later next month. In return, the farm’s organisers have accused local writers of being ‘too spoilt’ and ‘need to lighten up a bit’.
Tyrone Tribulations’ sightseeing expert Tally Molloy filed her report earlier today and agreed with the general consensus that it could have been a lot better.
It reads as follows:
PETTING ZONE: At £10 we were expecting a lot from the experience. The first hint that things might not live up to expectations was the petting zone. What this entailed was lining up behind each other to pet a decaying grey Labrador who was partially blind, lame in two legs and well into her twenties in terms of age. The closer you got to the dog the stronger the stench was getting and on arriving at the petting spot it was hard not to vomit over the creature.
WATERSIDE WALK: In order to sober up after that petting experience
we were encouraged to take the scenic route to witness the wild animals. Called ‘The Waterside Walk’, this was simply walking up a field alongside a massive puddle left by the rain the previous night. We were told to walk around the puddle five times. A man was topping it up with a hose.
WILD ANIMAL SECTION: We were brought to another field and were given binoculars and told to look at the top of a hill about half a mile away. There we could see about a dozen cows, chewing on grass. That was it.
TEA ROOM: This was a converted shed with concrete floor, one plastic table and six crates for sitting on. They served a plastic cup of mineral for £1 and a packet of crisps for 90p.
OVERALL EXPERIENCE: Disappointing. The man who showed us around left us for half an hour at the start as he said it was his dinner time.
Ballybeg Petting Farm have promised to tighten up a few loose ends before the grand opening. They also announced that the Petting Zone is temporarily closed after the timely death of Larry the Labrador.
Residents of a field in Brocagh were in uproar last night following news that a herd of Fresian cows has controversially annexed the march ditch between its own field and a neighbouring field, halfway along the Ballybeg Road.
Tension has been growing in recent weeks between different factions in the area, and in particular between two herds of cows, one Fresian, one Limousin. The situation worsened last Tuesday following the hostile entry into the ditch by three young Fresian calves which escalated further still as they aggressively dunged the ditch to claim it as their own.
The Fresians insisted that prior to the annexation they had conducted a democratic vote for the residents of the ditch, although this was hotly disputed by many.
Roger Parsley, a rabbit from near the end of the march ditch, insisted that the ballot results had been illegally doctored by the Fresians.
“It’s a feckin’ disgrace. How were we even supposed to tick the ballot papers? We’re not fit to. We haven’t even got an opposable thumb to hold the pen with. The whole thing was rigged. Is that a piece of lettuce?”
Parsley also claimed that ethnic cleansing was taking place, and that the Fresians had employed a team of foxes to displace dozens of families.
“Last night me and the missus were, well, a bit busy like. We’re rabbits, understand? I’m not going to spell it out. Anyway, a whole lock of foxes went past the burrow making all sorts of threats, dropping hints about what might happen if we didn’t move out, asking if we had ever watched ‘Fatal Attraction’ and suchlike”.
The United Nations have since appointed a special peacekeeping envoy in the form of a 4-year old tawny owl called Henry, which itself became embroiled in controversy after two families of dormice living near the ditch disappeared, which the owl guiltily dismissed as ‘probably just being a coincidence’.
The Limousins in the other field have since imposed sanctions by refusing the Fresians access to the big bath full of rainwater at the side of their field.
Meanwhile, a statement was released at the weekend by the three Fresian calves who took control of the march ditch which said that they ‘were only following orders’.
Jack Davidson, who played full back in the Brocagh Primary School Cannon McNamee trophy winning side in 1975, reported to UN authorities a feeling that he was being spied upon for over 30 years by the American government ever since stealing a Mars Bar from Falls’ shop in the summer of 1978.
A relieved Davidson admitted:
“I’m just delighted this nightmare is over. People thought I was going mad when I told them men wearing dark shades and talking down their sleeves were following me wherever I went. Even at Brocagh Sports Day they’d be hiding in the lough, like scuba-spies or something. I don’t know how this happened. All I did was nick a Mars Bar to give to a blade I was going with from Derrylaughan. I was only 13 like.”
American officials admitted their error after an internal investigation revealed the words ‘stole a Mars Bar’ was mistakenly typed in as ‘international terrorist’. He has since left the company of Al Capone and Charles Manson in the all-time danger list.
“Yes, this is a cock-up. We’ve spent $1.3m following this man around Brocagh and the surrounding areas for 30 years now. All we ever got on him was the time in 1985 when he got tore into a bottle of Bushmills and ran naked through the fields of Ballybeg for a laugh. It was only him, a few cows and two of our men camouflaged in a tree. What a waste of money.”
Davidson took this opportunity to apologize again to Falls’ shop for the theft and offered to do odd jobs around the premises to make up for his indiscretion 36 years ago.
An esteemed Brocagh family, the McGurks, claim they experienced the deadliest arguments they’d ever had during a three-day break at a caravan site in Bundoran over Easter. Tom and Cathy McGurk treated their two children and Tom’s parents to a traditional 6-seater getaway during the extremely cold spell at the end of March, managing to return to Brocagh with no one talking to anyone at all. Tom explained how the adventure got off to the worst possible start, making it a memorable break:
“As soon as we pulled out of Ballybeg Road, the children started arguing over who was getting the iPad. My mother then started giving off about the way young’uns couldn’t be pleased these days and that in her day they shut up and said nothing. Of course, my Cathy took that as a slight on her parenting skills and lit on mummy about poking her nose into things and even brought up my alcoholic brother as an example of ‘looking a bit closer to home’. We hadn’t even reached Cookstown and there was already stony silence.”
Things took a turn for the worse when Tom’s father and Cathy disagreed over the way home from the restaurant in Bundoran to the caravan site.
“To be fair, it was the best holiday for rows we’ve ever had. Daddy and Cathy were having a proper nose-to-nose screaming session over the route home. I was rowing with my ma regarding splitting the bill and the two children were cutting lumps out of each other in someone else’s garden. People were gathering around, pointing and laughing. It was a real humdinger of a weekend. I don’t think we stopped rowing even for a minute. Probably the best ever.”
The second day saw Tom’s parents move out of the caravan and spend the last night in a hotel near Downings but they all travelled home together, fitting in another bust-up over the temperature in the car.