I've always considered myself a "city" person.
Much of that persona flows from the fact that I've spent a professional career spanning over 40 years working in downtown Salt Lake City. The old Tribune building was on Main Street, and our present office is in The Gateway.
Add to that concerts, farmers markets, ice skating, nightlife and sporting events, and I spend more than a little time in the city. I'm comfortable downtown. I know how and where to park, how to use mass transit to get around, and places to eat or recreate.
I'm also the kind of person who enjoys being "first" when a new venue opens. If memory serves, I saw Bill Cosby open the Special Events Center at the University of Utah and the first hockey games at the Salt Palace, Delta Center and E Center. That was so long ago that one arena has been destroyed and the other three have new names.
So why haven't I spent any time at the new City Creek Center since it opened in late March?
After all, it's only a short, free TRAX ride from The Gateway, and I have eagerly watched its construction over the past few years. Everyone says it is one of the best-planned, most beautiful shopping centers they have ever seen. I am sure it's great.
And I am not only curious, but proud of my city. I am sure if we had out-of-town visitors, the new City Creek would be one of the first places I would take them. As a travel writer, I also know there might be a time when a guidebook company or magazine might offer me a gig writing about the new Salt Lake City.
With the risk of getting kicked out of the guys' club, I actually enjoy shopping, though a little goes a long way.
The older I get, though, the less getting new "stuff" interests me. Besides, a person of my size and girth has to do most of his clothes shopping at AAA Tent and Awning or the Big and Tall Store. I'm not certain either is represented at City Creek, though I suspect Macy's or Nordstrom might have a men's section where I can "supersize" it.
I can't picture getting a new Rolex watch, though I could envision myself surprising my wife someday with something from Tiffany and Co. That said, I'd probably rather give my business to a local jeweler.
On a day off when I have time to shop at a big department store, I can hit Nordstrom at Fashion Place Mall or Macy's at Valley Fair much more quickly than heading downtown. While I like the city, I also get tired of driving there most days.
There are no movie theaters or other forms of entertainment in the new complex. The new Brazilian restaurant might be worth trying. Given the fact I am constantly trying to lose weight, I certainly don't need to visit the Cheesecake Factory.
That said, I have thought about exploring the food court at City Creek. It does have some fast-food places we don't have at Gateway where, frankly, I've gone so many times for lunch that I am quite bored with the selection. But when you only have an hour for lunch, spending half of it walking or riding the train seems like a bit of a stretch.
All of these reasons seem like just excuses. It won't be long before I go exploring Salt Lake City's new downtown. I suspect I will leave impressed.