A Killyman teacher has urged the French Tourist Board to issue a health warning for any parents hoping to purchase tickets for the entertainment resort in Marne-la-Vallée, just a bit up the road from Paris.
Tony McKenner, a 40-year old father of three, was made to go to the attraction as a birthday surprise for his 6-year old daughter and returned vowing never to set foot in any amusements again, even Portrush.
“It’s the most miserable experience anyone could put themselves through. It was bad enough forking out 75 Euros for three sets of Mickey Mouse ears before we’d time to look around us, but then we queued for an hour to get on a ghost train which drove slowly through a house that wasn’t scary. However, I expected all that.”
McKenner maintains he failed to see anyone smile during the 6-hour ordeal:
“Sisters were kicking brothers. Brothers were whacking sisters. Mothers were pulling the ears off children, some which were not their own. Fathers were staring vacantly into the distance, ignoring the pleas of wives urging them to shout at the children with sore ears. All this was happening in the queue for an ice cream.”
The Killyman educationalist believes the resort’s backroom team Photoshop pictures to convince punters that they had a really good time:
“I came off the Buzz Lightyear Laser Blast thinking that was dung. We were then handed the photos and I was grinning from ear to ear. Now I’m starting to believe I actually had a really good time. But I know what I saw and experienced and I’m nearly sure it was horrendous. I definitely remember giving the child in the car in front of me the middle finger for shining his laser gun in my eyes.”
McKenner claims the big parade at the end was a celebration of the fact that the ordeal was at an end and that was why parents and children appeared to be generally in good spirits during it.
“I’d imagine it’s worse than childbirth,”
added McKenner whilst receiving a dirty look from his wife.
A young couple from Tyrone hope to make it big in the charts by launching their debut single which could also put Coalisland firmly on the pop music map.
Using a cover version of the Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers classic ‘Islands in the Stream’ with amended lyrics, Killian Grugan and Clare Toner, both from Brackaville, will release ‘Island in the Stream’ next month, inspired by the heavy rain experienced by the town in recent weeks, when at one stage Main Street almost turned into a river.
Unemployed sandwich-filler Toner, 22, agreed to share the lyrics of the first verse, which retains the same tune as the Dolly Parton version:
You do something to me that I can’t explain
Maybe it’s the people or the pelting rain
Or our Belfast links, it’s fifteen minutes there and back
Disneyland has nothing on our Newell Stores
Tiger Woods once played at Brackaville’s golf course
And our wemin he loved, Coalisland girls are mad for craic
The chorus then goes on:
‘Island in the Stream
Of that there is no doubt
Come see our deadly Spar
Take a lovely cruise on our quare canal
And we’ve the Central Bar, ha ha
And the Yankee Star, ha ha
Other verses remain a secret but Toner revealed,
“We’ve done a whole verse on the parking facilities in the ‘Island, and we were going to do more on transport links but we couldn’t think of a word that rhymed with Ulsterbus”.
She went on to explain how the idea came about on the spur of the moment.
“One day we popped into O’Neill’s when it was bucketing down for a quick one, and we had this wile idea. Let’s put the ‘Island on the map. They were playing Dolly Parton in the background and we both love Dolly so what better way to big up the ‘Island than re-writing one of her best songs? To be honest we were hammered by that time, but fair play we’ve carried it through. We’re going to be the biggest boy/girl pop group since them ones like Sonny and Cher, or Cagney and Lacey.”
Grugan, 24, a full-time ear defender, responded to questions over the accuracy of the lyrics, saying,
“Aye, well maybe a fifteen minute round trip to Belfast is stretching it a bit, but we’ve got to appeal to the tourists from Americay. That’s why we’ve mentioned the canal, see? And I’m sure I heard that Tiger Woods once played golf here. Or maybe it was Darren Clarke. Or somebody”. He went on, “There’s plenty songs that have put places on the map before. Where would London be without ‘The Streets of London’, Glasgow without ‘I belong to Glasgow’ or New York without ‘Viva Las Vegas’? Even ‘Mountains of Pomeroy’ made Pomeroy world-famous”.
Hopes are high for interviews in the London Times, Le Monde and the Coalisland Post. If the single is successful, the duo intend to record another re-written Dolly Parton classic entitled ‘Nine To Five-miletown’.
News emerged last night that the Dungannon & South Tyrone District Council are investigating over 14’000 complaints from the US relating to false or exaggerated claims about Tyrone made by independent travel agent Sperrin Travels, based in Cookstown.
Sean Keegan, owner and manager of the business which caters for the lucrative American market, is accused of creating falsehoods or embellishments based on scant knowledge of the area, which were published on the website as fact. The site boasted a whole series of attractions, including:
Ballygawley Play Park! If you like Disneyland, Epcot and the Magic Kingdom, then you’ll love Ballygawley Play Park. Experience the thrills and spills of numerous rides including the Magic Slide, Runaway Roundabout, and the Neverland Swings that even Peter Pan would love! Fairytale dreams really do come true in Ballygawley Play Park!
“Damn it to hell” said a furious Biff Masterson from America. “We’d gotten our travel booked and came all the way from the good old US of A and darn it, now our whole darned itinerary is in a pickle. Gee, this guy really needs a kick in the fanny. Our first day at Ballygawley Play Park was a god damn tragedy. A swing, a slide and a drunk man singing ‘Three Blind Mice”.
Keegan has been accused of exaggerating the truth beyond all recognition and failing to check even the most basic of facts about Tyrone and its environs:
“Sure, it’s easy done” said a shame-faced Keegan, who only recently loved to Tyrone from Dublin 6 months ago. “Who’d have thought there would be a place called Greencastle without there being a feckin’ green castle in it? No mills in Newmills – that’s just a stupid name then.”
The website also said it could organise a tour of all the likely sites of ‘the world-famous ‘Pomeroy Diamond’, a rare gemstone worth millions buried somewhere in the County that has proved as elusive and as enigmatic as the one thon old woman dropped into the sea at the end of Titanic’.
Chet Hogan, also from America, said
“Wow, seriously. This dude needs to wake up and smell the coffee already. We’ve water-boarded folks in Guantamino for less”.
The website has since been taken off-line as Keegan hastily re-writes the website, including its descriptions of Coalisland, Windmill and Washingbay.