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Where I attempt to suss out the locals...

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Due to poor quality, handling or a combination of the two, I find myself in a new place full of capture-able moments and sadly lacking in the ability to document any of it digitally. If my camera hadn't shorted out, heaving it's last breath moments before New Year's eve, it would provide much needed visuals for those I wish I could be sharing this with. Instead I will attempt (note the disclaimer) to describe what my camera, now gathering dust, would have shown- mainly the following three types of people:

- Tow-headed children in dire need of haircuts racing the chilly surf, while their pot-bellied father half-heartedly looks on, sunglasses shielding his eyes from the sun and any forced interaction.
- Seniors whiling away their retirement creating footprints on the sand and reflecting on whether or not the ones they left behind in their younger years were notable, noticed.
- Middle-aged joggers, caked in sand and sweat, taking bluetooth phone calls while their fanny packs flap with indifference.

They occasionally collide, forced smiles are shared, too-long hair is ruffled, pleasantries swirl in the salty breeze and conversation shallower than the waters of the shoreline ensues.

Each morning I reluctantly walk among them, earphones secured to avoid any in-depth attempts at acknowledgment and wonder if I brought with me remnants of the city. Do they catch the way I avert my gaze to avoid the obligatory hello? A practice picked up due to fear of eliciting unwanted attention from the drug dependent.

I don't want to appear unfriendly, hardened or jaded but I'm not the one permanently surrounded by a picket fence.