The water crisis in West Tyrone had escalated to the extent that many friends and visitors of those affected were unable to tell the difference between them and Derry people, especially around Castlederg.
As the NI Water industrial action temporarily ends, enabling most homes to return to normal, baths and showers have been running freely again with many people returning unused Lynx and Soft & Gentle Roll-On deodorant to chemists.
During the height of the crisis, with rivers close to an unbearable temperature, many decided to hold out from a full body washing in the hope that the NI Water came to their senses and looked after its customers.
A cousin of one of those affected informed us:
“You’d have thought you were in Feeny or Dungiven or Maghera even. There was a wile smell of Derry off the Castlederg folk and it was quite confusing. It would be like sniffing a clove rock and smelling Brussels sprouts.”
One of those affected, Brian Furey, admitted he almost took home the wrong wife during a shopping expedition in the Spar in Claudy, Co Derry:
“There were a pile of women at the check-out and I normally can indentify my wife due to her neutral odour compared to the Derry women. But because of the water crisis she just blended in. I closed my eyes and luckily grabbed the right one.”
A 44-year old father of three in Strabane is still refusing to wash, claiming he is taking part in an experiment after he read somewhere in the Readers’ Digest in the 1980s that the human body cleans itself after three weeks anyway.