February 11, 2013

places I love (salvation mountain).

I love a quick stop in a strange place. There are few as magic and strange as a rainbow-colored pile of throw aways and cement in the middle of Slab City in the California desert. 

We chose the hottest day of the hottest month of the year to visit Leonard Knight's mountain. 

We had read about the eccentric old man who had been living at his mountain and lovingly caring for it for longer than I had been alive. 

It felt like the road would never end. 

The desert so hot it glistened in the sun. 

We rounded a corner and saw Leonard's mountain in the distance. 

With no expectations, we crept out of the car. 

The desert was so quiet it was deafening. 

The only visitors, we apprehensively wandered around in silence, taking it in. 

After about half an hour, we heard a little noise, and found Leonard in a corner with a paint brush and a smile. 

He welcomed us with open arms, took us out to his truck, and shared stories with us about his special place. 

In the years since my first visit to the mountain, it has been an uphill battle for Leonard. Health issues have threatened the place that he loves and pours himself into.  

It's weird. 

It's bright. 

It's full of magic. 

The mountain doesn't ask for much.

Leonard doesn't ask for much. 

On our visit, we asked how we could help, and he just asked that we tell people about his home. About his message. 

But now, Leonard has had to leave his home (he's over 80!), and without him, the mountain needs it's friends to ensure the magic endures. 

They need volunteers. 

They need people who love the quirky parts of the world that make it so special. 

If you're up for an adventure, take a visit to the mountain. Pick up a paint brush and help out. 

It's the kind of adventure that doesn't happen enough, and you'll always wish it did. 



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