Written 2 May, 2009
I was out galavanting a couple of weeks ago and came across Scotty's Castle.
The real Scotty's Castle is a historic residence in Death Valley, now owned by the National Park Serive. The Second Live version is a true-to-life recreation of the house and environs.
I loved the surrounding desert. Despite the house of prim screens (flat backdrops of scenery), which I hate, the landscaping was great. It really looked like the desert. The house was nice, too-- rambling, and filled with Arts & Crafts furniture, which I love.
It was abundantly clear the build had been done with love.
Hidden in the green oasis of Grapevine Canyon in far northern Death Valley, the Death Valley Ranch, or Scotty's Castle as it is more commonly known, is a window into the life and times of the Roaring 20's and Depression 30's. It was and is an engineer's dream home, a wealthy matron's vacation home and a man-of-mystery's hideout and getaway. Walter Scott, Death Valley Scotty, convinced everyone that he had built the castle with money from his rich secret mines in the area. Albert Mussey Johnson actually built the house as a vacation getaway for himself and his wife Bessie. Scotty was the mystery, the cowboy, and the entertainer, but he was also a friend. Albert was the brains and the money. Two men as different as night and day, from different worlds and with different visions - who shared a dream.