Sunday, November 21, 2010

Farmer and Cave Dweller

One of the unexpected pleasures of my stay at Chocolate mountain has been to hear the occasional anecdotes that make up glimpses of the life and times of my host, Gordon. A native of southern California, Gordon came of age in the 70’s and adhered to Timothy Leary’s famous formula; “Tune in, turn on, drop out”. To Gordon, this could have taken one of several forms. For instances he recalls a back-to-nature community that would have taken him as well as Norman Paulsen’s famous Sunburst community.

In the end, Gordon chose a route that he likens to that of Eden Ahbez, the famous naturist and songwriter who lived for a time in the hills behind the Hollywood sign. Gordon made his home in a cave in the mountains near Palm Springs where he lived for an entire year subsisting on food he gathered from the wilderness and gleaned on trips into town. Notably, during his time in the mountains, he had contact with Douglas Bachelor, another cave dweller who would go on to become a renowned televangelist.

Somewhere in-between then and the present day, Gordon came to own a lot in Ojai where managed to support himself by growing mulberries and carob. During his time there, the value of his land appreciated to such a degree that he was able to buy his current homestead overlooking the Salton Sea as well as a few parcels of land in the mountains above Palm Springs. Here is some video he had another WWOOFer shoot of his mountains paradise:

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