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Book details
  • Genre:FICTION
  • SubGenre:Romance / Historical / General
  • Language:English
  • Pages:177
  • eBook ISBN:9781483508177

Three Maidens in Stanley Park

by John Edwin Parkes

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Abbreviated Synopsis THREE MAIDENS IN STANLEY PARK On a spring day in 1915 three young maidens stroll and cavort around in Stanley Park, Vancouver, Canada, then later leave, go out to the street and meet three boys. They engage them. It is the beginning of romance between the three maidens and the three boys. They, as three couples, do things together, date, see movies, take hikes, travel, tour places, and fall in love. The three boys go to war, fight in the trenches, and endure mustard gas. One is killed, one is shell shocked, and one comes home. At home, there are shortages, rationing, and a neighbor lady with tuberculosis. Vi, one of the maidens, helps this lady, but then, herself, contracts tuberculosis, and goes to a sanitarium. After the war, Timothy, who comes home, visits his sweetheart, Vi, at the sanitarium, then betroths to her, but later changes his mind; for he recalls mustard gas, its debilitating effect on men, and now sees tuberculosis, its debilitating effect on Vi. So, Timothy marries Joyce, the maiden whose fellow was killed. The third maiden, Jane, now marries her fellow, Bruce, the one shell shocked. Over the years, Vi recovers from tuberculosis, becomes a secretary, inherits her father’s house. Jane now works in a department store, but Bruce does not work because of his shell shock. Timothy works on a production line and still pines for Vi. He sees her on the street one day. She rebuffs him. Joyce in time dies from cancer. Years pass and Timothy with prostate cancer is about to die. On this, he forces an encounter with Vi on the street, telling her, that he wants to bequeath to her his estate. She refuses it. Years later, in old age, on a day, Vi sits on her front porch and dreams of what could have been but was not to be – a handsome soldier back from the war, betrothed to her, loved her, married her, and had children with her. Then the dream fades, is gone. She goes inside.
Synopsis THREE MAIDENS IN STANLEY PARK On a spring day in 1915 three maidens, good friends, are at Stanley Park in Vancouver, Canada, enjoying the day, strolling, cavorting around, seeing the flowers, and snitching one. Shortly, they proceed out onto the street to walk to their trolley stop. On their way, they encounter three boys in a fancy car, and they engage them. So develops the beginning of romantic affairs between the three maidens and the three boys. They date, see movies of the era, hike Grouse Mountain, visit and tour Victoria, and ride in daddy’s fancy car, stay in daddy’s lodge at the shore, drink daddy’s whisky, and, too, gather, eat shore clams, and roast marshmallows by campfire. Times are good. They promise themselves to each other. A war is going on overseas. There is rationing at home. Mrs. Delaney, a neighbor, has tuberculosis. The three boys go to war, fight in the trenches, and endure mustard gas. One is killed, one is shell shocked, and one, Timothy, comes home. One maiden, Vi, does chores for Mrs. Delaney. In so doing, Vi, herself, gets tuberculosis and is committed to a tuberculosis sanitarium. Vi’s mother, father, her two sisters, and the other two maidens visit her there. Home from the war, Vi’s sweetheart, Timothy, visits her in the sanitarium, gives her an engagement ring, and betroths to her. But his visits with her are disturbing, seeing her affliction, her coughing blood, like that he witnessed of mustard gas, its debilitation effects. Unable to bear being married to one so afflicted, he breaks off their engagement. He then marries the second maiden, Joyce, whose fellow was killed in the war. Vi is brokenhearted, suffers deeply. Time passes. Timothy’s marriage to Joyce is not happy because they fight. Jane, the third maiden, marries Bruce, the one shell shocked, but is not happy because of his in-to-himself. Vi in time recovers from tuberculosis, becomes a secretary. Vi’s mother dies, her sisters go to California, her father dies, leaves her the family house. Vi comes to know old Mr. Walker, who does chores for her on her house. After Mr. Walker does chores for Vi, they share tea, and light conversation. Years pass. One day Vi walks by a trolley-stop queue where Timothy waits for his trolley. He sees her, calls out to her. She stops. He is beaming, jubilant, talks to her. But the talk is short, for she rebuffs him, and walks away. On an outing at Stanley Park, Vi by chance bumps into Jane and both are excited to see each other for it has been a long time. They enjoy each other, have a good meeting, and recollect in memories the good days. They share tears of joy, they part, go their ways. In time, Timothy, a widower now, singles out, meets with Vi, as she passes on the street. She engages him briefly, in sympathy, as he tells her he has terminal prostate cancer and has six months to live. I will pray for you, she says. I want to give you my estate, he says. No, she says, I will not accept it. She turns, and walks away. Years later, in the fall, Vi, old now, works to clean up her garden for the winter and, it is, on this day that Mr. Walker finishes painting Vi’s window shutter. The day’s work over, they sit on Vi’s front porch, have tea, sweets, and light conversation. Shortly, Mr. Walker bids Vi a good day, and with an arthritic limp, steps down to the sidewalk, and leaves. The front porch is quiet now. Vi dreams – the handsome young man endears her, romances her, shares his all with her, promises to her, goes to war, and returns to her, but it is not to be. The dream fades, but comes then another. She sees three daughters playing in the clover field. The young father gathers them for a picnic on the spread in the field with the young mother. They all sit contented, eat, love is in the air. The dream fades, is gone. She gets up and with her cane and goes inside.
About the author
Writer’s Biography John Edwin Parkes was born in 1935 on a houseboat, on the St. Johns River, in Jacksonville, Florida, where he grew up. At age 17, he hitchhiked alone from Jacksonville to Vancouver, Canada, and returned. At age 18, he joined the U.S. Army Airborne for 3 years. At age 21, he joined the smokejumpers for five fire seasons, and received the coveted gold wings for having made more than 50 fire jumps. He attended the University of Florida for 1 1/2 years, and subsequently attended and graduated from the University of Idaho (BS, Geological Engineering), and the University of Iowa (MS, Hydraulics and Mechanics Engineering), and the Netherlands University at Delft (MS, Sanitary Engineering). In his early years, he looked for gold in the U.S., Mexico and Canada. He dredged gold in streams in California, and panned gold in streams in Colorado, Idaho, and the Yukon. In these years, he also explored the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon on a rubber raft, which included running Lava Falls, a Class 7 rapids (the only one in the U.S.). In his professional career, he has worked as a Civil Engineer / Water Resources Engineer in the western and eastern United States, and nine foreign countries (Nicaragua, Indonesia, Iran, Yemen, Philippines, Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka, and Sudan). He is a registered Professional Engineer in eight states. He retired from engineering at age 70 and began his writing career. He has completed two novels, 1) The Gold and the Mountain and 2) Three Maidens and Stanley Park. He has also completed a book of short stories, The Old Hobo and eight others. In addition, he has in final draft a one-act play, The Graduate; and two novels, Annie of Houseboat Chinquapin, and Gallagher. Moreover, he has in progress several technical treatises, dealing in statistics, water resources and hydraulics. He has been married 44 years to Linda, has two sons, three granddaughters. He resides in York, Pennsylvania.