Despite record-breaking torrential downpours and fork lightning, the McClure family from the White City in Dungannon maintained they are having ‘a deadly time’ searching for crabs and playing I-Spy in the caravan before the children head back to school next week.
With the disastrous weather during Summer 2015 making it a miserable break for families, hundreds of Tyronians have descended on Downings and Bundoran in a last ditch attempt to give their children something to write about when they get back to English class in school.
Harold McClure (45) revealed he built his best castle ever on Bundoran beach last night with a real-life 30-feet wide moat all around his 5-towered castle which took him 3 hours whilst the children watched in a huddle or kept an eye out for crabs:
“It’s just a pity there was no one else to see it bar the children. The ditch was lethal. It was 7-feet deep full of rainwater, and a real death trap so I got the children to buy and carry a new door from B&Q to act as a bridge. The rain isn’t too bad when you get used to it. Spotting crabs is great fun too. I think we pointed to over 100 crabs though some of them might have been the same ones.”
A caravan site barbecue went ahead anyway despite over 47 inches of rain falling during the feast, with three children hospitalised with acute hypothermia.
Event organiser JJ Doherty admitted the hospitalisation was ‘unfortunate’ but families should ‘feck away off to Malaga or something if they don’t want to run the risk of death whilst chewing on a hotdog during an Irish summer’s day.’
Lottery auditors have descended upon a West Tyrone GAA club after Elvis Presley won the £3000 snowball prize for the third time in 3 years, adding to other winners such as ‘Tom Jones’, ‘Clint Eastwood’, ‘Calamity Jane’ and ‘Shergar’ since the lottery commenced in 2012.
Killeter GAC Committee admitted no locals had ever won the big prize in the lottery but denied making up winners in order to pocket the prize fund for annual outings to Bundoran and Downings.
Local carpenter and lottery fanatic Killian Penrose remains adamant that something fishy is going on:
“They’re not even putting much effort into covering it up. Who’s called Elvis Presley, like? Barry Gibb from the Bee Gees has won it 4 times now. And as for Shergar….”
Killeter GAA hit national headlines in 1988 after advertising the opening of their new field ‘Castlederg Road Park’ with astronaut Neil Armstrong and Mahatma Gandhi as their special guests, organised by chairman Leo Hurson.
“And that was a farce too. This boy in a spacesuit turned up, helmet and all, and sure he was only 4 feet tall. I’m sure we’d have known if Armstrong was only 4 foot. And Gandhi had been dead 40 years. He just had some man from Aghyaran dressed in a sheet, waving to people.”
Chairman Hurson was unavailable for comment this morning but an inside source confirmed that there’s an Elvis Presley who works in a chip shop in Castlederg Main Street.
A Derrytresk stove-fitter has admitted to experiencing an unbearable level of stress in the aftermath of a £25 windfall in the weekend’s UK Lottery, forcing him to call a media conference to announce his stroke of luck.
Terence McNeill, who claims to have been on the receiving end of dirty looks since the rumour started, admitted he may move away from the area or at least go on a long holiday to Bundoran or even further.
At the press meeting near Tamnamore Roundabout, McNeill revealed how he managed to land the winnings, whilst spraying the assembled photographers with a magnum of Shloer:
“It was the numbers 1, 2 and 3 that got me the money. I always choose those numbers as I remember they were the first numbers I was taught in school. I couldn’t sleep that night but believe it or not I thought I’d won only a tenner. I didn’t know it had gone up til £25. Nearly had a heart attack when the woman handed me the money in the Spar.”
Word soon got out in the sleepy town-land of the influx of wealth, leaving McNeill feeling ‘alone’ and ‘confused’.
“I could overhear people saying things like ‘who does that hoor think he is?’ or ‘stuffy-nosed oul bollocks’ and stuff like that. Then came the beggars from the Church, the GAA club and the local gay and lesbian society. I had to call this conference to announce I’m giving nothing to anyone and for locals to respect my privacy. Just feck off.”
The Spar have cashed in on the winning ticket exposure by erecting a temporary sign with the words ‘Big Lotto Winner Bought It Here’ and putting on a 2-HP Sauce-for-1 deal.
Meanwhile, Edendork’s Jarly Hanson has fled his home after clinching the £20 snowball at Edendork Hall bingo last week.
Following their harrowing three-point defeat to neighbours Armagh, it was reported that by midday today only three Tyrone people had ventured out of their house and one of those was to lock the front gates.
The loss, which sees Tyrone exit the championship in mid July, comes on top of the cancelled Brooks concerts, leaving locals with little to look forward to apart from a weekend in Bundoran here and there.
Trisha Mullen from Benburb described the scene:
“It’s a deadly quiet place at the minute. The roads are empty for fear of seeing an Armagh person. No one wants to talk even. I thought I spotted movement in a hedge near Eglish but that could have been anything. My husband did set one foot out but an Armagh Carpets van drove past and he got teary eyed and said ‘feck that’ and went back to bed. There’ll not be many fields cut this week.”
Psychologist and Armagh fanatic Dr Tony Fearon reckons the double whammy of Brooks and Tyrone will have shattered even the most resilient Tyronnie. Speaking from his house in Portadown, he added:
“It’s a severe blow to the Tyrone psyche. All that’s left now is reruns of Glenroe and slagging each other. Rub it up them I say.”
Producers of a remake of The Good The Bad And the Ugly have moved quickly and filmed several scenes in ‘ghost towns’ across the county.
Meanwhile, the Tyrone management have scotched rumours that Mickey Harte plans to give every man in the county a game by the time he retires in 2020, in order to raise spirits. Spokesman Pat Quinn fumed:
“Hardly everyone, like. It’d be suicide sticking a lame 80-year old on that big McKeever lump from Armagh. He’d ate him.”
A firm in Dromore was yesterday accused of supplying low quality grass seed to the ground-staff at Brazil’s Arena da Amazonia football ground, where the England football team will commence their World Cup campaign.
Pictures released yesterday showed the pitch looking brown, dry and sandy, after having apparently applied fertiliser which was supplied by Seamie O’Donnell of Dromore Agricultural Supplies.
The England Manager, Roy Hodgson, fumed:
“The pitch is an absolute disgrace. It’s not fit even for growing potatoes, never mind staging a world-class event. How can the nation expect us to squander chances and needlessly give away possession every few minutes if we’re playing on a sub-standard surface? I have every intention of taking the issue up directly with this man O’Donnell, just as soon as we’ve played our three games and get back to the UK a week on Wednesday”.
The product, called ‘Dromore Gro-More’, packaged and distributed in O’Donnell’s premises on Clanabogan Road, provides instructions which read, ‘Simply sprinkle your seed all over the grass, stand back and watch! Deadly! Before your very eyes a lush and verdant landscape will appear – perfect for barbeques, cattle, diffing, and international
sporting competitions watched by millions. Easy to use, with no need to lock up pets or put the wee’ans in the house when you’re using it. Apply wearing a gas mask and separate oxygen supply’.
An irate O’Donnell was, however, quick to respond.
“That Hodgson’s got a damned cheek”, he said angrily. “No good for potatoes? Why is he going to have Wayne Rooney playing on it then? You could mistake that boy for a Maris Piper any day of the week. My grass feed is the best in the business”.
However, sources near Dungannon have suggested that the ‘high quality bio-stimulants’ that O’Donnell purports to use for the feed are actually just bags of sand that O’Donnell lifted from the beach at Bundoran at Easter.
Meanwhile, officials in Brazil this morning confirmed that in desperation groundsmen are applying a coat of green ‘paint’ to the pitch, which was apparently supplied ‘on the cheap’ by a firm in Clonoe.
A Cookstown couple’s marriage was last night said to be ‘on the rocks’ after a row over the built-in sat-nav in an Audi A3.
John Mulligan, a 43-year old fencer, was described by close friends as being ‘head-over-heels’ in love with his sat-nav he called ‘Samantha’. Neighbour and fellow handball player Conor Flynn admitted he saw the break-up coming many weeks ago:
“I told him to wise up but there was no talking to him. He’d go out four or five times a day for a spin in his car with the window down and you’d hear him talking away to the sat-nav, telling it jokes and yarns about the olden days. She’d be saying stuff like ‘at the roundabout take the first exit onto the Omagh Road’ and you’d see him laughing his head off and winking and pouting. He gave me a lift to Belfast one day and spent the entire journey talking about the adventures him and ‘Samantha’ had been on and how she was deadly craic.”
John’s long-suffering wife, Joanne, spoke of her battle for her husband’s attention:
“Even if we were just going half a mile down the straight road to the local shop he’d be shouting at me to shut up in case Samantha said something. Sometimes he’d drive past our destination on purpose to send the sat-nav into overdrive and he’d be blushing at it saying ‘turn around now’ or stuff like that. That bloody computer woman was driving a wedge between us. It was me or her.”
Earlier, eye-witnesses saw Joanne land a blow on Samantha with a rolling pin, sparking this latest fallout. Mulligan was seen leaving their house today with several bags packed and clearly holding Samantha the sat-nav under his arm.
Friends claim John and Samantha are off to Bundoran for a wild weekend and seeing how things go from there.
‘The Tan in Strabane’, a tanning studio in Urney Road, owned and operated by farmer Eamon Nugent, was investigated by trading standard officials from Omagh following numerous complaints.
Nugent defended his shop putting it down to what he called ‘teething troubles’.
“I’ve been in the tanning industry a long time”, he said. “Twice to Benidorm and a week in Bundoran last July during that boiling hot spell. Mighty. There’s not much I don’t know about getting a tan”.
Customers have accused the services of falling far below their expectations, including the ‘Super Deluxe All-Over Tanning Booth’, which consisted of Toner in a pair of dungarees holding two roller brushes and a bucket of what apparently looked suspiciously like creosote.
“Creosote? How dare you. Not in my establishment”, bristled Nugent. “I use nothing but the finest products. Anyway, if it was good enough for 200 yards of timber fence, it’s good enough for some of the wemin round these parts. Thon last coat went on in 2008 and it still looks like new. What are they complaining about?”
Other complaints relate to the ‘Nail & Beauty Bar’, consisting of a pair of pliers, a wire brush, and some sandpaper. Nugent was also accused of over-charging a generously-proportioned customer for a tanning session on account of her size.
“Aye, she was a big unit all right”, admitted Nugent. “I told her that because of the extra beef on her she’d get charged more so I slapped on an extra tenner. Materials aren’t free you know. Should have charged her per square foot. I’d have made a buckin’ fortune”.
Trading standards official Ronan Docherty, said,
“What are people playing at anyway, trying to get tan round these parts? It’s hardly Donaghmore is it? They’re not wise in Strabane. They’re trying to compete with all these Europeans types that have moved here when everyone knows that Strabane people can do two colours – tomato or snow. Half them ones that went to that shop would get burnt looking a picture of the moon. Eejits”.
The salon is closed until further notice.
Controversial plans to double the number of blades on the county’s numerous wind turbines have been met with dismay by many concerned residents.
Leaked documents from the Ordnance Survey Department and Dungannon & South Tyrone Council confirmed that the customary three blades will be doubled to six, under a scheme to convert all of them by June 2014.
“That’s right”, said Councillor Enda McMann. “If we double the blades, we double the speed. That much is obvious. Those massive yolks will just be a blur. Like the propellers on an airyplane. Mighty”.
However, opponents of the programme have produced what they say is incontrovertible evidence that the entire county is already slowly being pushed westwards by the collective power of the ever-increasing number of wind turbines.
Killyclogher businessman and self-appointed community spokesman Terence McNabb, demanded answers.
“You wouldn’t believe it. Tyrone has nearly a thousand of these feckin’ things. On a windy day you can feel the whole county shaking. It’s definitely on the move. You can get sea sick if you’re not careful. Strabane definitely isn’t where it used to be.”
Kevin McGinty, a pig therapist from Coagh, concurred with the findings.
“We drove to Bundoran for the weekend there and it took us two hours to get there on Friday afternoon. When we left just two days later at midnight on Sunday it only took us 90 minutes. Explain that. Tyrone’s definitely getting closer to the coast. At this rate we’ll be in effin Americay. We’ll all be speaking with funny accents and eating burgers and saying ‘talk to the hands’ and suchlike. Something needs to be done”.
Ever-keen to jump on the populist bandwagon, and showing barely the flimsiest grasps of the most basic facts, McNabb said,
“Them wind turbines is already a nuisance without making it worse. It must take a whole lock of electrical power to get thon massive blades turning and for what? To make the place look cuter? They cost a fortune so they do. They’re not cost-effective. If we made them solar-powered they might be a bit cheaper to run. They shouldn’t have gone up in the first place”.
Meanwhile, Dungannon & South Tyrone issued a pamphlet to all households throughout the county asking everyone to play their part in trying to improve the recent poor weather by ‘doing whatever you can to prevent a warm front from meeting a cold front’.
The much anticipated Dromore speed-dating night has thrown up no relationships despite the presence of 30 men and 30 women desperate for a partner. The organisers, Get The Singles Off The Streets, say they were extremely disappointed at the results and predict another slow decade of marriages in the village.
“I can’t believe no one liked anyone. In fact, our online results show that 80% of those who took part now hated each other more than ever. This is bleak news. Having observed some of the questioning techniques I think we need to do a crash course in chat-up lines. It was obvious that some of the fellas, especially those in the 45-54 category, were well out of practice. I overheard one man tell a prospective partner that he loved travelling. When asked where he has travelled, he told her that he took a scoot out to Bundoran last weekend. I could see the pretty lady shake her head despondingly.”
36 year old Rylan McMenamin, a self-employed trampolinist, reckons it’s the last time he’ll attend one of those nights:
“It was pure dung like. I asked this girl if she liked making stuff and she said she liked making scones and soda bread on a hearth. I was thinking this is the girl for me but to be sure I asked if she cleaned up after herself when the food was ate. She just got up and walked off. These women don’t know what men want.”
Cathy Dornan, a 26-year old needle-maker, was equally unimpressed:
“Dromore men are like no other. There was one lad who was the best of a bad bunch and I was prepared to give it a go. As a final question I asked him if he liked kissing and stuff. He laughed and said ‘sure that’s teenage stuff – I’m more into ripping the knickers clane off me wemen’ and then flashed the worst set of teeth I’ve ever seen. I nearly fainted.”
The Dromore Speed-Dating Night 2 has been cancelled.
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.
GLENELLY. Former captain Joseph McCullagh becomes the first man to leave Glenelly for pastures new. There will be a going-away do in the community hall with music supplied by the Plumbridge Brass Band and Joseph’s uncle, Mattie McCullagh, who’s singing songs from the musicals. Festivities start 8pm tomorrow. Come along and see Joseph off in style before his long trek to Bundoran.
MOY. 13th Annual Camel Wrestling Event. A little known fact is that the only two camels in Ireland kept as pets both live in the Moy. This remarkable coincidence has lent itself to a yearly wrestling competition held between both even-toed ungulates. With 6 wins apiece this year’s fight promises to be a real humdinger. Ice cream made from camel milk will be provided for children. First bell rings at 7pm tonight.
TATTYREAGH. Annual bath for brides and grooms-to-be. Come along and witness the bathing of soon-to-be newlyweds in the Ballynahatty Water. Tradition in Tattyreagh dictates that all weddings in the area take place in November. At the end of October, all couples intending to tie the knot that year bathe in the freezing waters as relatives gather and clap. No showers are to take place between then and the wedding. That’s why the women hold flowers, to disguise the odour. First dipping at 11am Sunday.
STEWARTSTOWN. 100th Gurning Competition. Famous for its natural gurners, this year’s Stewartstown gala promises to be special as the centenary gurning weekend gets underway today outside the bank at 2pm. With competitions for all age groups and genders as usual, organisers have opened to competition to pets and livestock. Dan McCann is aiming for the ‘Most Miserable Bollocks’ title for the 5th consecutive year.