Last night Joe looked at me and said, "We're actually going!"
Yes, yes we are.
We are going to Ireland. In a little over three weeks, we'll board an airplane, fly to Dublin, check in to our hotel, and begin a seven-day adventure.
We have wanted to do this for years and years. Twelve years ago, we almost did! We looked at websites, figured out an itinerary, contacted the tour operator for details and pricing, and then went to Las Vegas instead. (By the way, it was totally the right decision!) So Ireland remained safely ensconced on the proverbial bucket list.
Then my older sister announced that, by hook or by crook, she was going to Ireland; more specifically, she was going to Avoca. Avoca is the village where the BBC filmed the show Ballykissangel, her all-time most favoritest show ever. And, by God, if no one would go with her, she would go alone!
Well. I heard myself say, "We'll go with you!"
And so we are.
It turns out that Avoca is only about an hour south of Dublin. Not only that, there's a company that has a tour that includes a stop in Avoca, along with a train ride down the coast and a bus tour of Arklow and Glendalough.
Because I'm one of those people who likes to cram all the sights and sounds into a visit, I had visions of day tours all around the country to all of the amazing places. Cooler heads prevailed. Several folks gave me advice to not overschedule, which is very good advice indeed given our travel styles. (I, as I said, tend toward schedules; Joe tends toward spontenaity. It's actually a good mix!)
So we're staying in Dublin. We have one or two planned things every day. Two of the things are day trips -- the aforementioned one to Avoca and another to the Boyne Valley, home of ancient Celtic and early Christian sites. The rest of the things are specific Dublin activities that only take up a piece of the day. I've already bought all of the tickets we need, made all of the reservations, and downloaded a couple of guidebooks to our Kindles. (I gave Joe the one titled 20 Things to Do in Dublin Before You Go For a Feckin' Pint. Seemed appropriate, because Joe is in charge of pubs.)
Now the list making and travel folder creating begins. (What? You don't make a travel folder??)
It still seems unreal (well, except when I look at the dent in our bank account). But it is real! And I can't wait!