John the Baptist lived in the desert and led an ascetical life.
Crowds followed him wherever he went.
The Gospel of Luke reminds us:
"Now the people were filled with expectation, and all were asking in their hearts whether John might be the Messiah.
John answered them all, saying,
"I am baptizing you with water,
but one mightier than I is coming.
I am not worthy to loosen the thongs of his sandals.
He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire."
(Luke 3: 15-16)