I am from Philadelphia, which has a lot of history. Outside of school outings, I didn't take advantage of the landmarks. Three weeks before I moved to Michigan, a friend and I became tourists. We saw the Liberty Bell, stood in John Adams' footsteps, went to Pat's Steaks, etc.
Although my family visited Washington a number of times when I was a child and my Dad was called to DC for government meetings, I have not been in Washington since the late 1990s. What always struck me were the wide variety of foreign languages and dress of folks touring the Capitol, standing outside gawking at the White House and visiting the museums of the Smithsonian. Even as a kid it made me proud of being an American that the world was interested in our government and history.
"There's so much trouble in this world; surrounded by miracles" - Citizen Cope