Anne River

The Year of The Pig

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

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 Р2, 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!

Anne River meets the Ocean

Anne river

This is my last blog post about Anne river. Here she is, on her final run to the Ocean. All the way from Dunhill, through the yellow Iris and Buttercup fields.

cows

Her waters are so clear that I spotted a school of young fish feeding on something invisible.

fish

fish

Final destination – Annestown beach. It is where Anne River meets the Ocean.

sea

annestown

First I climb the eastern edge of the cliff, but I don’t walk any further – I think this part is quite dangerous to walk.

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I sit down in the soft grass and enjoy what I see. Thrift (Armeria maritima) is blooming in early June, and it is the most beautiful part of the scenery.

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annv 059

I cross the beach and walk to the western edge, where cliff walking is safer. I have taken many photographs but it is impossible to share everything in this blog. One of the little pleasures was taking photographs of many flowers I came across.

flowers

I found some big, sturdy daisies that looked a bit like the Seaside daisy but not exactly.

flowers

I also found a single flower of Gladiolus.

flowers

This is the view from the western edge. If you click on the photograph to enlarge it, you will see a stony structure in the end of the beach. It is the remains of a lime kiln. Limestone was heated there until it crumbled, and was then used for fertilising the land.

annestown beach

There are many magnificent rocks and cliffs and welcoming coves down there.

cove

It is where I turned back: I didn’t like that crumbling sandy slope. It is the Ballydowane cove.

annestown

Back in Annestown, there are two donkeys – the most photographed donkeys in the area. I am not sure if they are the same donkeys I see every year – they must be not. Life of a donkey is harsh and unpredictable.

donkeys

As I was talking to them and rubbing their ears and heads, I though about the generations of donkeys that have lived in this old paddock over the years, or may be, centuries. They have never seen beautiful Anne River valley that lies just a quarter of mile down the hill from them, with its lush grasses and clean, transparent waters.

donkey

Thank you for walking with me through these three blog posts along the Anne River!

inese_mj_photographyHave a wonderful weekend!

 

Dunhill Castle and my failed geocaching

dolmen

I think that Ireland is at her prettiest in May-June when the Hawthorn hedgerows are in fool bloom. They say that a lone Hawthorn is a Fairy tree. People tie ribbons to them asking blessings from the Good Folk РSidhe. There is such a tree in the outskirts of Clonmel. It is seen in the photographs that were taken in the beginning of the 20th century, but when I saw it just a couple of years ago, new ribbons were tied to its branches, which means that the fairies still reside there and answer prayers.

Anne Valley is no different from the other places, all frothed with the white lace of hawthorn flowers.

Looking up something in Google, I came across a Geocache page  where I learned that there is a cache at the dolmen near Dunhill village, and another one at the castle. I am not doing geocaching, but a couple of years ago our family came across a cache in the tree in Wasatch mountains. It was a fun surprise. I was going to take pictures of the dolmen anyway, because it stands close to Anne Valley,  so why not to do some treasure hunting. I took a bead bracelet with me and drove to Dunhill.

It is the Ballynageeragh dolmen, restored in 1940 ‘by P. Murray and sons’, as the inscription states.¬†The massive capstone rests on a wall constructed from building blocks. The original stone is missing. The dolmen looks lonely in the middle of the field.

dolmen

I went around the dolmen a few times, looking into the holes between the stones, but the promised tupperware box was nowhere to be found. I guess I am not a good treasure hunter after all.

dolmen

My next destination was the Dunhill Castle.

This is a look down from the hill. I could see all the world from there. The weather was unusually warm and humid, with not a slightest breeze. Humming and buzzing of insects were the only sounds that disturbed that tranquil wilderness.

dunhill castle

This land was not always so peaceful. Unlike many others, Dunhill castle put up a resistance to Cromwell, and was destroyed by the artillery. In 1912, the east wall collapsed during a storm.

dunhill castle

Inside the castle.

dunhill castle

These steps lead to the first¬†floor, but I didn’t climb them, unsure¬†if I could make it there without railings, let alone get down.

dunhill castle

Look from inside the castle.

dunhill castle

Another look from inside the castle, this time at the Anne Valley.  Anne River was navigable in the times of the Dunhill Castle glory. You can see the ocean in the distance.

dunhill castle

Anne river is rushing to join the Ocean. You can read more about this stretch of the valley in Jane Tubridy blog post, because she walked there, and I just drove ūüôā .

anne river

And this is where we started our walk, just a mile away, Anne River all adorned with the Crowfeet weeds, with The Dunhill Castle silhouette in background.

anne river

I stop at the car park at the foot of the hill to have a closer look at¬†the horses I saw from the castle window. Anne River is slightly deeper here, and runs silently, without cheerful gurgling. Knobby Club Rush is rustling in the wind, …

… delicate Ragged Robin gently trembles in the breeze.

Foxgloves look almost fluorescent under the dark canopy of the trees on the hill slope. I love their spotted trumpets and the strings of the sturdy buds.

foxglove

In my next blog, ¬†I will write about the place where Anne River meets the Ocean. Hope you enjoyed the trip, and here is a Field sparrow for you to make you smile. He looks surprised because he didn’t see me come.

Ah, about the other geocache – I just forgot to look for it! ūüôā

sparrow

Anne Valley Walk blog post started the series. One more post to follow. Hope you enjoyed this walk. ūüôā

inese_mj_photographyHave a wonderful weekend!