Well I’ve been in Salida for about two and a half months now. During this time I’ve seen a fair amount of odd and interesting things around town. So today I grabbed my phone, left the house, and walked around snapping pictures of everything that caught my eye so I could share these moments with you.
Running tangent to Salida’s southern border, Highway 50 seems to be a good place to start our little walkabout. Right across from Salida’s locally run (and deliciously brewed) Soulcraft Brewery is some sort of dog training facility. Now I’ll admit that I know very little about training dogs but one thing on the sign made me stop and wonder.1
When I see “dog gym” I think of dogs struggling to bench press because they lack the opposable thumb that’s necessary for gripping. But I also imagine some German Shepherd speaking in an Arnold-esque accent giving other dogs advice they didn’t ask for and whose every other word is “bro.”
After visiting the dog gym, I suggest we travel northeast a little ways to look at a different sort of animal. This one is real, unlike our furry Arnold Schwarzenegger who can’t stop panting (and that’s not due to the weight lifting), but it does have a certain air of fantasy about it as well.
A polar bear. In the middle of a small Colorado town.
Just call me Jack and drop me off in the middle of an isolated island that exists in its own alternate reality and time dimension.2
Next we wander into the heart of town. Sitting just outside the downtown area is Salida’s Fire Department. But the window says something unusual…
First off, I want to remind you that I am in the middle of Colorado. So I’m not really sure why it’s says South Arkansas… Next, the idea of a Fire Protection District makes me laugh. I can’t help but imagine a group of people trying to stop firefighters from extinguishing a flame because they want to “protect” the fire.
Now we edge a little closer to the heart of town, where there is six churches within a two block radius. They’re pretty standard looking buildings, but on the side of one is a painting of Jesus preparing for the most epic crowd surf that humanity has ever seen.
Finally, our journey takes us to the heart of Salida. Where everybody goes, where everybody is family, and where all my adventurous days come to a close: Wal-Mart. In here there is one product here that utterly confuses me…
I’m not sure what “infant water” means. Is it water specifically created for infant consumption? Or is it water made out of infants- like coconut water? I really don’t know.
And with that final question for us to ponder, I want to thank you for walking around Salida with me. It was a fun journey full of wonder, joy, and complete inexplicability. But that’s why I like living here so much. For being such a small town, it’s amazing how regularly I’m surprised by things that seem to pop up overnight. Whether it’s an arctic mammal, a religious figure having a good time, or illegally-sourced water, all I can do is laugh and look forward to what I’m going to see next.