Month: January 2018

Life of a donkey

Donkey Sanctuary

Donkeys are the most misunderstood and abused animals around the world.

  Bonnie Jo Campbell


Last summer I visited The Donkey Sanctuary farm in Liscarroll, Co Cork. The farm is a home for 127 donkeys ( the number might have changed), but the Sanctuary has over 1800 donkeys in their care, about 500 of them re-homed. How did it happen that so many donkeys had to be rescued? Sadly, in order to claim agricultural subsidies many farmers use donkeys as a low-cost means of reaching the minimum stocking density required. The cost of castrating the young males is far higher than their value, and the donkeys that are left to fend for themselves in the fields would breed all the year round. Also, if a donkey gets sick it is often cheaper to buy a new donkey than to take it to the vet. On Done Deal website you can get a donkey for as little as €50, and often “to a Good Home free”. All of this contributes to the high numbers of neglected and abandoned donkeys nationally.

Donkey

I came to the sanctuary on my way to Killarney and had less than an hour to look around and enjoy the company of sweet donkeys. I have always had a soft spot for goats and donkeys.

There is a cute picnic area in the farm, and everything is tidy and homey.

Donkey Sanctuary

In this building you can buy some donkey-related souvenirs and make a donation. You can adopt a donkey for a donation of €25 a year.

Donkey Sanctuary

After I made a donation, Margaret and I had a lively conversation about the Sanctuary. There are three more donkey farms in Ireland, she said, but only this one is open for visitors. They are not a breeding farm, but sometimes they get a pregnant female. No baby donkey this time though.

This cat deserves a picture. His eyes were permanently wide-opened which has probably something to do with his busy schedule as the mouse hunter in the farm.

Over the years, I have taken many donkey pictures. I often make them black and white to express the sadness I feel about the life of a donkey.

Donkey

Donkey

Donkey

Donkey

I have seen them careless and playful too.

Donkey

Daddy, mommy and a little photo-bomber in background.

Donkey

With his mommy a couple of months later.

Donkey

Some facts about donkeys:

There are five main breeds and cross-breeds of donkey in Ireland: Grand Noir du Berry ( black donkey);  hinny, the offspring of female donkey and a male horse; mule; miniature donkey, and a shaggy Poitou donkey.

Donkeys can live up to 50 years. They are social animals and it is not good to keep a donkey as a lone animal. Donkeys are stoical by nature and won’t show that they are in pain. Proverbial stubbornness of the donkey can indicate that the animal is simply afraid. Being safe is important for donkeys.

Donkey

The Donkey Sanctuary was founded in 1972. Many things have changed since, and many donkeys have crossed the Rainbow Bridge, but there is a 40 years old donkey still living in the farm. The average age of the other donkeys is 10 years, which is an indication of an economic downturn in Ireland a decade ago.

Katie is a volunteer from The Netherlands. She is a donkey whisperer 🙂 Katie explained me the ‘mystery’ of the yellow and red collars: red means a boy and yellow a girl. And there are the names written on the collars!

Donkey Sanctuary

Donkey

Donkey

Donkey Sanctuary

Donkey

I found a video on YouTube, Castletown Donkey Derby, 1994. It is fun but still I am sorry for the donkeys.

 

When a donkey brays, the other donkeys listen.

Donkey Sanctuary

Jason the donkey brays his heart out, and I am delighted to hear his performance.

Donkey Sanctuary

A humble man’s helper, donkey costs almost nothing to keep. A little bit of care is all he needs – hoof trimming, shelter, access to water. Civilization has used the poor donkey badly, and as if it is not enough, donkey’s meat and hide are the subject of trade in some countries.

I wish we lived in an ideal world where nobody is hungry, cold and lonely, and the ability to hurt others is erased from human genome.

Donkey

Thank you for reading and bearing with me.

www.inesemjphotography.com Have a great week!

Tannery Drifting

Tannery Drifting

This is drifting and that is the Tannery. All in Portlaw, Co Waterford. Visit their Facebook page and save the date of their next drift day in your calendar.

Tannery Drifting

I will write more about the Tannery some other day.  This post is all about drifting.

A fan of Fast And FuriousI am happy that just a half an hour drive from Waterford there is a place where I feel so wonderful. I am truly grateful to those who run the local ‘drifting rink’ in the old parking lot of the derelict tannery. So many young lads stay out of trouble because they are busy doing something good. Something they enjoy doing.  This short amateur YouTube video gives you an idea about the atmosphere on the site. The drivers come to the Tannery from as far as Donegal.

To take these pictures I pan my camera along with the moving cars. I use a low shutter speed – not faster than 1/30 sec- and usually focus either on the driver or on the surface of the car that is close to the driver. You can guess that using this technique only a tiny fraction of the shots can be called a keeper, 10% may be, but I love giving the shot a feeling of motion rather than freezing the action. If the environment doesn’t add to the shot, it is better to leave it blurred. It would be a different story if I took pictures of a swimmer or surfer: the waves look gorgeous around a surfer 🙂

You can tell that car is moving if the wheels are spinning. The cars are not necessarily moving straight in these pictures even if they look so.

Tannery Drifting

Tannery Drifting

Tannery Drifting

Tannery Drifting

Some drivers like to impress the spectators with a cloud of smoke.

Tannery Drifting

Tannery Drifting

I make myself comfortable on the concrete barrier. From here I can see everything quite close, and if I turn around I can see the cars on their way to the ‘drifting rink’ and back.

The last advice before the start?

Tannery Drifting

Age doesn’t matter, we all love drifting.

Tannery Drifting

I think I have picture of these people in the same place but in their winter clothes 🙂 The tires are gone though. Somebody put them on fire.

Tannery Drifting

Auto Chem, one of my favorite teams. I move my rug so that the weeds wouldn’t get into my next picture.

Tannery Drifting

All kinds of minor accidents happen during the drifting. Tire blowouts are the most common. I have seen a deflated tire hula-hoop, roll away, make a circle and return back to the car.

This car was doing just great, and then there was a loud boom.

Tannery Drifting

Tannery Drifting

This car is loosing its rear bumper but the driver never bothers to stop. After a few seconds the bumper frees itself from the car and flies away.

Tannery Drifting

This car hit the tires during the drift and got its bumper damaged.

Tannery Drifting

Tannery Drifting

Old tires can be quite agile when pushed.

Tannery Drifting

“Sorry, give us a second!”

Tannery Drifting

Sometimes a car has to be pushed using manpower.

Tannery Drifting

Tannery Drifting

After the drift.

Tannery Drifting

Tannery Drifting

Tannery Drifting

Some lads make alterations to their cars. I am not an expert to understand the purpose of this one. Improved aerodynamics or an emergency exit? Looks cute anyway.

Tannery Drifting

I take a peek inside the car.

Tannery Drifting

The cars are so clean that it makes me ashamed of mine…

Tannery Drifting

They use a motorcycle engine in this car. Doesn’t it look like a heart?

Tannery Drifting

I hope you love cars as I do. Enjoy your January, and if you are drifting stay focused like the driver in the picture.

Tannery Drifting

www.inesemjphotography.com  Have a wonderful week!