An Ulster teacher unwittingly walked around for two weeks with a winning lottery ticket in her purse - before losing it, finding it again at a petrol station and then discovering it was worth nearly £700,000.
Fermanagh drama teacher Siobhan O'Brien was celebrating today after collecting a cheque for a cool £649,657 from Camelot headquarters in Belfast.
But the windfall may never have happened but for a few strokes of luck. Siobhan carried the winning ticket around in her lucky red purse for two weeks. The mother-of-one then lost the purse but retraced her steps to find it at a petrol station where she had left it on the counter.
Fate had clearly destined the fortune for Siobhan and her husband Tom. She said she got the "shock of her life" to discover it gave her a share of the Lotto jackpot from Wednesday, January 9. The Belleek woman was one of four jackpot winners to share over £2.5m.
She said: "I shudder to think what could well have happened to my purse. I was here, there and everywhere with it in my handbag and apart from the petrol station I had a few other narrow escapes.
"I kept mislaying my handbag when I took a group to a feis in Dundalk where there were 2,000 competitors in three different rooms - and all the time the ticket was there."
News of Siobhan's win comes as lottery fever builds with over £72m in jackpot cash up for grabs in tonight's and tomorrow night's draws.
Tonight's EuroMillions draw carries a jackpot estimated at £54m. And tomorrow's Lotto draw has a triple rollover worth an estimated £18m which must be won on the night. If no-one matches all six main numbers the jackpot will be shared between winners in the next prize level.
Despite the fortune, Siobhan and Tom, a basket-maker who also teaches his art to students, will still be trying their luck.
"I've been a regular player for years and I won't break the habit this weekend. I'll enjoy the excitement - and if I win I'll be very generous to charity," Siobhan added.
"We are delighted with my windfall. It's just a perfect amount to win - it should allow us to have no financial worries while still keeping our feet firmly on the ground."
The O'Briens' son, Shane, takes his finals in Law and French at Oxford University this year. Siobhan will continue to teach drama at the Erne Special Needs School in Enniskillen and at St Ninnidha's Primary School in Derrylin. She is also part of the Borderline players in Pettigo.
She now is casting an eye towards an acting trip to America. "We have been fund-raising to take the group to perform in America - maybe now I'll be able to pay my own fare," she said.
"And since Tom and I met and lived in the States for some years it would be nice to buy a little holiday place in Florida - now the prices are coming down."