The Year of The Pig

It would be just another new year if we didn’t have Chinese Zodiac calendar 🙂

The year of The Dog is fading away as the year of The Pig starts in February and marks the end of the Twelve years Cycle.

Was 2018 “a good dog” for you? What were some of the highlights?

Here I share some pictures taken in 2018. It was (and still is) a very challenging year, but I cannot tell it has been unlucky for me.

The year started with a lazy snowfall that continued into the end of February. Then a mighty storm hit the island – you can see all the pictures in my previous blog post.

The snow melted in the first few days in March.

I didn’t see much of St. Patrick’s Day parade this year, but I liked this actor and took some pictures.

Spraoi monsters looked completely out of place at the St. Patrick’s Parade. I don’t think it was a great idea to include them. Yet, I posted this picture for a reason since I want to tell you a few words about monsters.

I discovered  Jean Lee’s World  blog in 2015. After reading one article, I went back through the archives and read almost everything. I was stunned. A quick check on Amazon showed no books. No books?! Later I learned that Jean Lee did work on a novel, but there were many obstacles she had to overcome – you can read her story as she tells it herself in her blog. 

In June this year, Jean Lee published the first book of the short fiction series Tales Of the River Vine. The other five books followed, introducing the characters of her first YA fantasy novel Fallen Princeborn: Stolen, Book 1, parts 1 – 2, available on Amazon. An intelligent, captivating, very well written book will take you and the courageous, strong-willed teenage heroine to the fae world of darkness, and, hopefully, back. I look forward to reading Book 2 in March 2019. I am so very happy for you, Friend! You did it! Your books are as wonderful and unique as everything else you do. 

Please visit Jean Lee’s amazing blog, and read her books. 


The days went by. In the end of May I got my life back, but in a complicated form. The world is still beautiful, though.

A Chaffinch still sings his little heart out…

… and his cute lady looks pleased.

Puffin here is just being gorgeous.

In the end of July I returned to blogging, and visited a few more places.

I went to the Cunnigar. I didn’t do the crossing, just walked to the end and back, watched the birds and insects. Usually I see one heron at a time, but there were seven. They took off when I came closer.

This scared fledgling was sitting in the middle of the boggy area on the Anne River trail. Hope his parents came to his rescue before a predator got there first.

I also went to the Comeraghs. Taking pictures of sheep never seems boring.

Then I came across a lone black pig. I later learned that this is her daily walking route.

Finally, there was a long flight, and many different birds and animals.

I guess my life was spared once again. We landed in Dublin in the eye of the storm Ali to learn that some 80 flights have already been cancelled or diverted, and a RyanAir plane had been forced to abort landing. Only two hero crews – Philadelphia and our JFK – landed their planes that morning. The landing was a nightmare, but it was performed splendidly regardless of violent swaying. The plane was still rocking and shaking in the gusts when we finally approached the terminal, and the passengers were instructed to watch their foot when stepping onto the jet bridge, as it might get detached. Two days later, a delivery man handed me my luggage and said ‘You guys are lucky to be alive’.

And then came the Autumn. It went through the different stages, until it was safe to call it Winter.

The young year of The Pig begins with hopes and dreams.

Who can tell what it will grow into?

Just be a good human in the year of The Pig, and everything will work out for your good.

Everything will definitely work out in the end.

 May the New Year be wondrous!


  1. Ah, the lovely animals have come out to say Happy Year of the Pig! Beautiful photos and wonderful post about Jean. Your generous heart sings praises for all. Blessings now and always, darling Inese! xo

    1. Thank you so much, Rose! Hope all is well and your New Year is off to a great start. I look forward to meeting the sweet Pig 🙂 Many blessings to you, dear friend. May there be love and happiness in the year of the Pig for you xxxxxxxxxx

    1. Michele, if it is your sign then it is going to be a good year, however it will take much effort. No chilling 🙂 So was with me and then with my daughter, and it is what the book says too. At least nothing bad will happen in the year of your animal, which is itself a good promise 🙂

  2. I loved every one of those pictures, Inese. It shows how life balances challenges with way to cope with them. Truly beautiful. You understand the animal world so well and it shows in your work. Thank you for taking me on the journey with you. Here’s to 2019 and all that it has to offer us!

    1. Thank you so much for your kind words and good wishes, Cheryl! You and Basil have been a source of knowledge about the lands I will never see with my own eyes. Thank you for all the trips and ‘wows’ 🙂 Wishing you a happy year filled with adventure and good luck! xx

      1. Awww! You’re really kind and your words of encouragement mean so much to us. Thanks for making my day! Just what I needed to bring some warmth in a cold January. 🙂
        You never know though. Maybe you’d travel to those faraway places someday. 🙂 I’d love to read what you’d have to say. xoxo

  3. I’m wishing you a healthy new year, and that your challenges may be fewer this year.
    As always, I enjoy your beautiful and interesting photos. That’s some pig at the top!

    I will check out Jean Lee’s blog too.

    1. Thank you so much, Cynthia! Hope the new year is wonderful.
      Thank you for checking out Jean’s blog. You will find a good friend in her.

  4. I love your photos, Inese. They always make me pause for a moment to absorb the beauty or wonder. I guess even the big toothy pigs love ear rubs – something to remember for the new year! Wishing you a 2019 full of more beauty and wonder. ❤

  5. Ooooooooooooooh, you made me cry! I’m blessed to have your vision through your photography and your friendship in your words. Thank you so much for this! xxxxxxx

    1. Jean – I am just so very happy for you 🙂 Writing is healing – so is photography. Have a fantastic New Year, my friend! xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  6. Those pictures have an out-of-the-worldly aura about them, but the same is true of your writing as you remember the year gone by, fraught with untold accounts chilly and sinister, loaded with promise of life fresh and fragile as dew. You make me drunk with your posts.

    1. Thank you so much for your kind comment, Uma, and for ‘reading’ my pictures. Happy New Year to you and yours! They say it is a year of countless opportunities. Cheers to the opportunities! Vivat 2019 🙂

  7. The year of the dog has seen some changes with me. It started chaotically for me selling all my possessions and flying out east to take care of my mother and averting her to going into a care facility. Events back east saw me put a label on things and once I identified that label within me something lifted quickly and I began to feel amazing. The amazing feeling is not constant but is there for the most part. I am truly lucky to feel this way. It has been almost 3 years that I have been feeling heavy within and now that is gone.
    I love pigs and look forward to them starting the Chinese new year off. Love all your photos as per usual. The mime looking person was mesmerizing in the photo. Am following Jean Lee’s blog. I have so much to read I don’t know when I will be able to get there. I did follow though.
    I am pleased you are doing better. Sending you healing and comfort. Hugs.

    1. Thank you Joseph! I am delighted to hear that it was a year of good changes for you, and things started falling in place, finally. Your new home is something amazing 🙂 You will be pleasantly busy in summer, and I look forward to reading about your projects. Happy New Year, friend. Hugs.

  8. Hello Inese, thank you for sharing this wonderful series! And what a lovely tribute to the pig 🙂 Like many folks, 2018 was a challenging year, but (gratefully) there were some good moments too. My husband & I are looking forward to 2019. Wishing you a very Happy New Year ❤ ❤

    1. Thank you so much, Takami! It was a challenging year indeed, and for some countries it was tragic as they had the earthquakes, fires and floods. Hope for a happier New Year for all. My best wishes to you for the New 2019! ❤

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