ST. AUGUSTINE, FLORIDA – Local officials were dismayed today when they received a test report from a federal lab about the water in a nearby park fountain. The test showed that it originated from an artesian spring located in Gatineau, Quebec.
“Oh, Judas Priest!” said Roald Martin, a hydrologic engineer who works for the State of Florida. “Normally water is just water, but not in this case!” He was referring to the park site listed on the National Register of Historic Places where the famed Fountain of Youth was said to have been discovered by Spanish explorer Ponce de Leon in 1513.
“This is a disaster,” said Michael Rodriguez, who heads up the visitors’ centre in St. Johns County. ”Just when tourist season is ramping up. Canadians won’t want to come here now when they find out they can get this same water at home!”
Roger Atwell, who sits on the St. Augustine police commission, had other concerns. “I don’t want to be the one who has to explain this to Homeland Security,” he said. “That water crossed over the U.S. border from Canada without any documentation.”
Pierre Duchesneau, a city official from Wakefield, Quebec, said he didn’t see any reason for alarm on that front. “NAFTA is still very much in place,” he said. “And our water gets a free pass.” He also said the ultra-pure Quebec eau de fonte artésienne probably reached the Florida fountain through the Intracoastal waterway. “If I can prove that,” he said, “We’ll be sending them a bill every month.”
The anomaly showed up when the water in the Florida park fountain was tested in preparation for a bulk sale to a research hydroponic operation. The botanists had planned to use it for a project to grow a prune cultivar without wrinkles.
Chief scientist Arnold Zeffareli of the federal test facility in Washington D.C., was able to shed some light on the method the lab used to prove that the water tested from Florida actually came from Quebec.
“It’s like a DNA test,” he said. “But with water.” Source: FNT Staff