Eventually, I got to the point where I could afford to travel a bit. And here's where the awesome part comes in. When I went to Athens, I could visualize Hadrian walking through his arch down to the temple of Zeus. Or in Florence, walk the exact same streets as Michelangelo and see exactly where Savonarola was burned to death.
In Rhodes I could see the approach the armies of Salah ah-Din had to make to assault the fortress of the Knights of St. John. It wasn't just a wall, or a bunch of bricks, it was a living, breathing piece of history. And knowing the history of it, I felt connected to it.
And now that I know that history can be so enlightening, I seek it out where I don't know it. In Korea I learned about King Sejong the Great and why he's great, and suddenly I find I'm interested in linguistics and invented writing systems (great site btw http://www.omniglot.com/). And I find connections between things everywhere!
It's just history, but other things in life suddenly have a vibrancy and flavor I never saw, because I never knew how to see.