I am not sure how to answer this question; this is my first foray into Mainland Europe (sort of). From everything I read, Europe is different from what you would expect in New Zealand, Australia, or the Caribbean. So, I think that I am more open than I have been in previous trips, not sure what to expect.
Besides my basic wonderlust, I know that I have always been interested in Rome and Iceland. There is something about both locations (as a photographer, Iceland, and the Mediterranean have an appeal). As someone who has studied rhetoric, I cannot help but be interested in Greece.
From a very early age, I was told stories of Rome. My father worked for a company that made earth moving equipment and he was the salesperson for the Middle East. His supervisor told him that he should stop in Rome on the way back from his trips. Since spouses were expected to travel along, this means that my father and mother would stay on room three or four times a year. So, I have the memories of their stories and photos to prompt my interests.