A quick hour bus ride out of Dublin brings you into the Wicklow Mountains, pass Blessington Lakes, the positively ancient site at Glendalough (The Valley of Two Lakes) and the lovely little weaving village of Avoca, whose scarves and blankets and caps are sold round the world.
Even in rain and mist, this is a marvelous day excursion.
I told our guide that whatever they were paying her, it was not nearly enough. A born Talk Show Host, with an Irish lilt in her voice, a prodigious encyclopedic knowledge of practically everything including economics, history, religion, health, education, literature and the blessed ability to call up any file from her memory as needed.
In the perfectly charming hotel in Glendalough (You couldn't ask a movie set designer to improve on this Irish Country Inn.), it was the Annika and Annika Show. two very funny friends from Holland in their 50's who started chatting me up and became my lunch buddies. What a riot and one of the joys of travel, meeting lively interesting people like these two ladies.