Chapter One Hundred Eighteen:
It was a short walk from the town commons to Winston Standfield’s house. When Garry knocked on Winston’s front door, He was immediately greeted by the smiling visage of Wally’s Grandfather. Wally put down his Diet Coke and got off the couch too as he had a good view of the front door from where he had been sitting.
“Garry, I see you brought a very beautiful friend along,” said Winston as he extended his right hand towards Stephanie. Stephanie gave Winston a warm smile and shook his hand, “Pleased to meet you sir. Garry has told me a little bit about you and I’d like to learn a lot more from you.”
“That’s quite the compliment,” said Winston. “I’ll try my best to satisfy your curiosity.”
Winston was not repelled in the least by Stephanie’s punk rocker presentation. Colored hair and piercings had never upset him. He liked kids that showed a bit of attitude. After all, Winston Standfield was just a big kid himself.
“We were just watching wrestling on tv. Do you like wrestling, Stephanie?” asked Winston.
“I love wrestling. You could say I’m a wrestling fanatic,” answered Stephanie.
“Can I get you a drink from the fridge?” asked Wally who was having trouble keeping his eyes off Garry’s new friend. “Would you like a Coke, ice tea or a beer?”
“Oh, that’s easy. I’ll definitely go for a beer,” said Stephanie.
“I noticed your Save Ogopogo tee shirt. It appears to have a large ugly stain on it,” said Winston.
“Well, Garry and I had a little collision at the refreshment stand at the demonstration. Garry accidentally spilled some of his drink on me.”
“Garry has always been a clumsy oaf,” laughed Wally.
“So you two met at the demonstration. What was the demonstration like?” asked Winston.
By that time Wally had handed Stephanie her beer and she was popping the zip tab off her can of Kootenay.
“Can I get you a glass?” asked Wally.
“No way. I’m a punk rocker chick. I have attitude.” said Stephanie. “Sorry about the tee shirt. Garry offered to buy me a new tee shirt, but I told him not too. The stain will probably come out in the wash.
“That Orange Crush is like battery acid. It can burn a hole right through your tee shirt if you are not careful,” said Garry.
“I’ve always liked guys with a sense of humor,” said Stephanie.
It was early July and it was summer vacation for Stephanie and Ryan. Both of John’s kids worked odd jobs during the summer months so that they would have some spending money and to help pay for tuition . Stephanie and Ryan both had paper routes and also did chores for some of the people in their neighborhood.
Stephanie was the first to arrive home. She had been doing some dog walking for a couple that lived on their street.
Stephanie had medium length natural blond hair streaked with bright, red hair coloring. She had a gold nose ring and a piercing in one eyebrow. Stephanie wore a black and gold Nirvana tee shirt that had a few holes in it. She wore stone washed blue jeans with a tear in one knee. Stephanie was part nineties Seattle grunge and part punk rocker. Her favorite band was Nirvana. Her other favorites, in no particular order, were Alice in Chains, Soundgarden, Hole, The Plasmatics and Motorhead. Stephanie also liked The Ramones and The Sex Pistols. She owned a large collection of CDs.
Like her brother, Ryan, Stephanie lived with her mother during the majority of the year. She had a strained relationship with her mother. Stephanie’s mother did not approve of her daughter’s style of dress, her friends or her lifestyle. Stephanie’s mom, Susan, was very concerned that her daughter might be using street drugs. Her brother Ryan got along much better with his mother and often smoothed things over when Stephanie and Susan got into intense verbal disagreements. Both kids were very upset by their parents’ break up but had their own ways of dealing with it.
Prologue To Lake Mariposa:
I have recently re-read my novella, Lake Mariposa. I was delightfully surprised by how much I still enjoyed it several years after writing the original draft.
If the reader grew up in the mid to late nineteen sixties this story will likely be very nostalgic. I believe that most of us tend to glamorize our youth as we grow older. We often tend to romanticize those years as being almost a golden age. The nineteen sixties are still glamorized by the media today.
There can be little doubt that the sixties were a very unique time in which creativity, art and self- expression flourished. What many people forget was that it was also a potentially dangerous time period in which experimental, psychedelic drugs were easily accessible. Lake Mariposa takes a look at the dark side of the sixties as well as its positive attributes.
On the positive side of the ledger the music of the sixties was more experimental and creative than the music of any other decade. Most people in my age group find it difficult to get interested in the music of the seventies, eighties, nineties and two thousands to the present. Much of the creative spark appears to have been lost somewhere along the line.
There are exceptions, of course, such as nineties Seattle grunge bands like Nirvana and the punk genre/heavy metal stylings of The Ramones and Motorhead.
I lived in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada during my adolescent years. We were very fortunate to have a very strong local music scene that featured some great home grown bands and musicians. During one summer, several local rock festivals took place in Manitoba. If one had easy access to a car or was not afraid to hitch hike, one could attend one or even all of these local, outdoor rock festivals featuring a dynamic collection of Canadian talent.
As this was the ‘hippie era’, it was not difficult to connect with a diverse group of strangers as there appeared to be a shared, almost communal philosophy of life. Young people went to these rock festivals not only to hear some great music but also in the hope of making some new friends preferably of the opposite sex.
Lake Mariposa also deals with the different segments of youth such as the straights, the jocks and the stoners.
One of the themes of Lake Mariposa is the burning desire that young men of that era had for female companionship and hopefully, a girlfriend. The novella deals with the intense challenge that this posed for many young men of that era. Lake Mariposa is concerned with young, romantic and immature love. It is also about how to make sense of a changing society and the difficulties involved in making the necessary adjustments.
I hope you enjoy reading my novella, Lake Mariposa. It can be read for free at Wattpad.com, WordPress.com, Typepad.com and on my own web site, kendavidstewart.com
Thank for your time spent reading this prologue.
Ken David Stewart