Flatiron Building, New York City (photo by Sheila Scarborough)You have to stop walking, breathe deeply and let the moment ooze into your brain.

A building or monument that had previously been part of your travel dreams is now right in front of you. It actually exists. Real people work in it, stroll past every day, purse their lips in annoyance at the tourists who are so excited to touch it.

“I’m really here!” you think, a bit sheepishly because it is certainly stating the obvious.

Or maybe, like me, your whole brain is vibrating with “Squeeeee!”

It’s discombobulating to realize that yes, that really IS the Leaning Tower of Pisa (and wow, it leans! The picture on the pizza box is true!) or the Eiffel Tower, or the Forbidden City in Beijing, or the Golden Gate Bridge.

That’s how it was for me last weekend, in New York for the TBEX travel blogger’s conference, when I specifically laid out my walking directions in such a way that my path would take me past the Flatiron Building.

Built in 1902 by Daniel Burnham (yes, of Chicago architecture fame) it is one of the most recognizable, most distinctive buildings in the world.

Read this for more Flatiron history, but pause right now and think about a building or structure that you’ve always wanted to see in person and were finally able to stand in front of, ogle it like a doofus, almost get run over as you try to photograph it….not that this happened to me at the Flatiron, mind you….

Please tell us about it, down in the comments.

I want to share my Flatiron squeee! brain ooze feeling with everyone who travels partly for the joy of saying, “I’m really here!”

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I'm a writer and speaker specializing in tourism, travel and social media. NHRA drag racing fan. Co-founder of Tourism Currents. U.S. Navy veteran. Caffeinated.