Steve Beauregard Column July 01, 2009

Hot times in the city

My wife and I have been married five years now, or 4 1/2 years longer than my mother-in-law predicted.

To celebrate our anniversary, I decided we should keep that “spark” alive by spending a long, romantic weekend in a place synonymous with hot, steamy sexiness: Salt Lake City.

To show you how romantic it was, we brought along a screaming infant.

I secretly made all the arrangements, then surprised Marie on the Friday morning of our anniversary. Needless to say, she was pretty excited. Her exact words were: “I was going to clean house on Sunday.”

But I had made reservations. Nonrefundable ones, too. So I forcefully dragged her away from all the fun and frivolity of the mop bucket and we grabbed the baby and headed West.

We immediately dived into all the wonderful activities that Salt Lake has to offer, seeing as how there wasn’t anything on TV. We started at the Clark Planetarium, where I took about a million pictures. Not of the space-themed exhibits, but of this really big elevator.

For some reason they have this humongous 20-foot-high steel elevator — the biggest one I have ever seen.

You may think it’s an incredibly lame vacation when the highlight involves posing for photos in front of a giant elevator, but it sure beats sitting around bored for hours while your wife shops. Which is what I did next.

We’re at this fancy outdoor mall called the Gateway Center. I plop down on a bench and tell Marie: “I’ll stay here with baby. You go ahead and shop and take as much time as you want,” which is husband code for: “Meet you back here in five minutes.”

She comes back two weeks later and we leave to tour Temple Square. Although I’m Catholic, I really wanted to see it, because I have a lot of respect for the Mormon faith and because it was free.

We got to go inside the famous Mormon Tabernacle, which has these impressively large pipes and organs. I could attempt to make a lame joke here about a “large organ,” but that would be tasteless, so I won’t.

What I will do is tell you about the incredible musician who demonstrated the arena’s great acoustics by dropping a dime up on stage. You could hear the dime drop throughout the hall. Something else you could hear throughout the hall was a 4-month baby belching. So we grabbed Marilee and scurried out of there.

The tour eventually ended and we decided to grab lunch. Before you’re allowed to leave, however, you’re legally required to convert to Mormonism — something that, frankly, I thought should have been disclosed prior to the tour.

But rules are rules. So, after the mandatory baptism, it was time to head back toward home, via Park City. The ritzy ski town boasts a 2002 Winter Olympics museum that I really wanted to see because of my interest in sports and because it was free.

It was definitely worth the price of admission. After just 20 minutes of glassy-eyed staring at incredibly exciting things like the REAL, ACTUAL BRONZE MEDAL that Uri Frankleduf Dopeopovich won seven years ago in the 1,500 kilometer cross-country skiing with-a-rifle-on-your-shoulder pairs freestyle skating event, you start looking around to see if there are any big elevators to photograph.

So we headed back to GJ via the back roads, mainly because I had never been through eastern Utah towns like Duchesne and Roosevelt.

Now I know why.

No, sorry. What I meant is that they are very lovely towns that I’m sure would be excellent places to live should the rest of the country get destroyed by nuclear war.

So all in all, Salt Lake City is a wonderful, friendly place to visit, full of interesting and historic attractions to see.

I recommend the elevator.


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