Cruising for Pitas by Christina Ironstone

I wrote this story in grade 11.  I love it because it is cute and sweet.   Check it out! 

Cruising For Pitas

By: Christina Ironstone

Grade 11

“Talk to you soon, have a good day” Alice called out.

“Thanks you too! Good luck at your interview” Julia responded.  Julia grabbed a bottle of water out of the fridge and as she did the doorbell rang.  Julia answers the door and assumes that it is Alice and questions her. “Alice did you forget something in your room?” Instead of the voice, which Julia expected to hear, it was another, the voice of her friend Josh. Josh had been her friend since she finished high school, three years ago and they had become quite close one might even say, that they fancied each other but never spoke of it.

Josh answered “ No it’s Josh, buzz me in” she did as he asked and opened the front door for him.  Josh entered the room wearing a white golf shirt and a pair of kakis. His brown hair was short and cleanly cut.

“What’s up?” She asked curiously, his smile faded as he answered

“I just caught Rich with Mel” Rich lanker was Josh’s best friend for ten years, and Melissa was Josh’s girlfriend -a snotty rich girl who thought everything belonged to her. Rich never seemed trustworthy to Julia but that never seemed to bother Josh. Josh never looked at the bad in his best friend, because Rich saved Josh once from making a huge and possibly a fatal mistake. At the age of 15, Josh started rebelling against his parents after they broke up. One night Josh drank a bottle of vodka and decided to take the family car for a drive. Rich however showed up and prevented him from driving.

Julia was completely stunned by his admission, “What?”

Josh’s response seemed painful “I went to visit my parents for the weekend and my dad had a last minute change in schedule. I left on Saturday and I entered my apartment to find them together. I asked how long it had been going on….” He trailed off but seeing how worried and concerned Julia was, he continued. “They said for at least three months now. Rich moved out of the apartment yesterday.”   Julia unsure of what to say offered Josh a cold drink and he accepted. She motioned for him to sit down on the bar stool and he did as asked.

“It’s a good thing Rich moved out, I wish I knew what to say, Josh.”

He smiled lightly as he gave his response. “ That’s okay, I just needed to go someplace to clear my thoughts, talk to someone I trust.” Josh paused shortly and spat out “How is it that you can have such a good friendship with Alice yet Rich appeared to be a friend and secretly dated Melissa all these months?” He dropped his head onto the counter and mumbled some inaudible words.   Julia remembered when she was in high school, it had been a long time ago or so she thought. High school had been when Julia had lost herself and found herself in a short period of time. Alice and her almost stopped being friends because they were drifting apart and they didn’t take the time to know each other.

“I am going to tell you a story, I hope it helps you, if not at least it will answer your question.” Julia stated.  Josh nodded his head. He did not bother to say the last thing he needed right now was to hear a story, which most likely had a happy ending. Josh did not want to listen to the story but at the same time he was grateful that she was trying to make him feel better.  She started to tell the story “ When I was in high school, nothing made sense to me. I lost myself and I almost did not recover, Alice and I were friends but not close and my mother just left my father and I. My life was in shambles I had nowhere or no one to turn to for advice or guidance, along with the fact that I was falling apart.. I started to skip school and I partied way too hard. My friend Melanie and I did everything together, party, drink, and mess around, life was one big party for the two of us.  Alice had been my elementary school friend and friend in high school but we started to drift apart after my mom left. Alice tried to be there for me it was just that I wasn’t there for me, so how could she be?”   Josh looked stunned, the girl who stood in front of him seemed so wise and intelligent, never would he have pictured her for the crazy/party girl type.  Josh did not understand what the point of the story was or how it would help answer his question so he asked her.

“What does this have to do with Rich and I? Is it relevant?” Julia smiled a faint smirk, which seemed to say that he asked a silly question.  Josh wondered to himself, did the story have something to do with what was going on and he had somehow missed it?

Josh received his answer just as soon as he asked for it “ Yes, it is relevant, very relevant if you ask me.”  She paused took a deep breath as if the topic was painful for her and resumed. “ One night I arranged to meet Mel and my boyfriend at a party.  My ride dropped me off an hour early at the party, I entered the house and started to look for my friend Mel and my boyfriend but I could not find them.

I felt rather bored at the party, there was no one I knew and the fight I just had with my father was echoing in my head. ‘You’ll never go places if all you do is mess around with those no good friends of yours! What ever happened to Alice? She was a good friend and you throw her away.  You’re going nowhere real quick.’ I yelled at him, told him that he was wrong, that he didn’t know anything.  At the party I felt the sudden need to be alone, I didn’t want to see anyone not even Mel or my boyfriend. I found my way to the patio and what I saw devastated me, I was wrong and my father was right. This is the reason I am telling you the story, what I saw on the patio was Mel and my Boyfriend making out as if they were a couple”

Silence filled the room, Josh understood why Julia told him this story, she gave him a very valuable piece of advice. A piece of advice, Josh knew he’d always remember. A partial friend doesn’t care about you or your feeling they only want someone to screw up with, not a friend who cares. “What did you do Julia? What could you do?”

“The only thing I could do, I called Alice. I asked her to pick me up, at first she almost hung up on me because I started ignoring her the month before. Alice agreed to pick me up. I was in tears when Alice arrived. My whole face was red and blotchy from crying and it was hard to admit that my father was right and that I had been a complete idiot.

Alice took one look at me and said ‘I don’t think you should go home right now. Lets cruise around and talk. Are you hungry? Thirsty? In need of a hug?’  I couldn’t believe that she was being so nice and caring towards me. Alice was so different from me, Alice never wanted to miss class or rebel against her parents and she was a well-rounded girl who always looked for the silver lining in bad situations. I unfortunately saw the worst in situations and I constantly missed class to rebel against my father. We did not have many things in common yet we had enough, and enough was great.   Alice found a nice little pita place on the edge of the city and the two of us talked in that restaurant until 6 am the next morning.  When I got home my father and I worked through our issues and I felt as if we became closer and more understanding of one another.”

“So cruising for pitas changed your life around?” Josh asked skeptically and she answered him, her voice filled with certainty and belief. “It wasn’t the fact that we ate or what we ate, it was the fact that we reached out to each other and connected as friends on a different level.  For once I felt as if someone actually cared what I thought and how I lived.  Cruising for pitas, I fixed a broken friendship and found myself along the way.”

Josh smiled what Julia told him was very personal and deep she didn’t have to tell him but she did.  Telling him the story about her experience made him feel better and he understood more about this girl.   The door opened and it was Alice, Julia’s roommate in College.  She greeted both him and Julia quite warmly.  “What are you two talking about?”

Julia answered Alice’s question  “I told Josh about when you and I were high school and how we became good friends.”  Alice laughed, the memories they shared she treasured even the not so good ones. The two of them had their fair share of problems but they managed to survive.  Alice looked at the two and said “Interesting.” Julia and Josh looked at Alice totally confused about what she meant by ‘Interesting’. The answer totally shocked them but it was true, true as water is liquid.  “I hope you two don’t need to go cruising for pitas to find out what’s between the two of you.” On that note Alice entered her bedroom leaving the two speechless.

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