Saturday, April 20, 2013

Out and About ... (and more old rocks)

Out and About                                                                                                              Friday April 19, 2013

            This day turned on a dime! It was to be our last day in downtown Dublin and we had on the itinerary seeing the Guinness-whatever, and Trinity College where the ancient illuminated manuscript of the Book of Kells resides. We would be checking out of our wonderful B&B, and seeing the City via bus, and ending up at my high school friend Pauline’s to spend the next two nights. But before breakfast, whilst I was checking email, my FaceBook “phone” rang, and there was   Pauline, “ringing” me – saying the weather was too great and we must go and see some wonderful site!

            So out we checked from No.31, navigated the morning Dublin traffic (Brian only slipped into the wrong lane one time), and found Pauline and David. (Note on roundabouts here: If you are going to take the “third exist” you have to stay in the inside lane!).

Our hosts: Pauline and David

             Pauline and David live in a lovely 4th-floor “apartment” (we would call it a condo). We can see the bay from here.

            They took us to Glendalough (glen of two lakes), south of here about 20+ miles in county Wicklow.. It is an absolutely lovely, peaceful, picturesque, historical, magical place to walk and see incredible time-enduring stone structures from the sixth century on!        

An artist's rendering of what it might have looked like.


              It is a glacial valley dotted with remnants of its early Medieval monastic settlement founded by St. Kevin, a hermit priest in the 500’s. The remaining architecture is astounding. The 900 AD tower really was used in a Rapunzel-way. They would climb up the rope and then draw the rope in so no one could follow.

            We walked through the settlement and onto the lakes. The day was perfect with sun (I’m getting a wee bit of Irish sun on my face). 


I learned a new Irish way of saying one is going to the loo: “shed a tear for the Queen..” Cute.

            After lunch we went to a wonderful upscale shopping haven: Avoca Handweavers in Kilmacanoge. There were hand-woven wonderfulness, but also a great cook wares section, hand-made delicacies, garden delights, and a restaurant which we will revisit Saturday for my birthday! In the middle of the large one-story store is a glassed-in  large tree growing towards the sky. Hanging off the branches dangling whimsically are about 4 dozen various and sundry tea cups. Very fun!

            Then Pauline took me to the grocery store (I do love grocery shopping in different countries) Tesco.  Interesting that the grocery carts (“trollies), are “for hire.” In other words, you pay your coin for the cart, and then when you return it you get the coin back (it’s their way of carts not “walking off.”)

            Pauline made lamb hotpot (layered lamb, potatoes, onions), which was delicious!  
          Tomorrow is Birthday-in-Ireland. Sweet anticipation.

1 comment:

  1. Ohhhh, I can't tell you how much I love your posts--vicariously living it thru you, and of course, thinking of my old gramma, Maggie Flanagan in County Mayo growing up. Soooo nice! Maybe some year we'll go--or not. Take care and have the bestest birthday to celebrate 'n jubilate EVER!