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Waiting for My Real Life to Begin (Old Photographs Waltz)

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Faith’s a coastal kinda girl.

East coast. West coast. Either way she’s good, so long as the ocean is in something resembling driving distance. It isn’t like she’s the type to hang out on beaches or haunt the cheesy boardwalks that usually come with. And she sure as shit isn’t the type to squeeze into some cheap-ass J.C. Penny swimsuit special, deal with sand sticking to her ass, and fry her skin until it’s as dark as cheap leather.

It’s more like she loves the idea of the ocean. All that big, wide open. All that mystery under the waves. All that water that might as well be a desert if the undertow grabs you and drags you out into the deep blue.

Back in the day when she stood on a beach, shielded her eyes from the sun, and stared at the horizon she could (almost) imagine that something better was waiting for her over that horizon. That’s the idea she really loved.

Lake Erie, on the other hand, ain’t no ocean.

She feels it in her bones like only a coastal girl can. Sure, it looks like a big, wide open, but she knows that when she stares at the horizon the only thing on the other side is Canada. Nothing against Canada, especially since she’s never been across anything resembling an international border, but the fact that when she looks out over Erie and all she sees is a big-ass lake and Canada on the other side of the horizon strikes her as a perfect picture of where her life is at.

In some ways, being free in Cleveland feels more like a prison than the actual prison in California.  At least in a California prison she could imagine the ocean was close by.  She even had a plan for the day she got out (if she ever got out). Thumb a ride to the beach, stand on the shore with her hand shading her eyes, and stare at that Pacific horizon.

Didn’t exactly work out that way, and she never did get a chance to peep at the ocean between breaking out of prison and fleeing Sunnydale. 

She feels kinda cheated on that score. 

Because right now she could use an ocean and a horizon she can look at, and she needs to imagine that something better is waiting for her there if only she could reach the other side