January 3, 2012, a cold, bitter, freezing day. I walk across Central Park, from West to East, via the Reservoir. The immense skyline of Midtown and the Upper Sides comes into view. This is New York.
Little did I know that the death of something near and dear to me was approaching.
In these passages, these blogs, if you've been reading for a while or care to go back in time and browse, you have/will notice(d) my obsession with pumpkin, often in pie form but also in custard variations. Throughout October and November, I devoured pumpkin pies and custards, thanking whatever forces in the universe that allowed such delights to occur.
January 3, 2012, a cold, bitter, freezing day, I go on the hunt for pumpkin pie. According to Serious Eats, the best to be had is at Yura on Madison, a cute little bakery/cafe on the Upper East. I find said establishment, and it's filled with affluent Upper East Side types, eating their cakes and pies, oblivious to the plights of the common man. Why not join them, I tell myself!
The pumpkin pie: Good. Rich. A complex, flaky crust. Is it the best? No! It can't be! Perhaps if it were on a plate (and not in a plastic container), perhaps if it had whipped cream, perhaps if it were Thanksgiving and there was a roaring fire in the background, then perhaps it would be the best? Perhaps, although I am skeptical.
In the end, I am forced to admit something to myself: perhaps I'm not crazy for pumpkin pie anymore. Perhaps now that fall is over, and winter is here - as it most indubitably was on that blistery, inhospitable day - perhaps now pumpkin pie has died, only to be resurrected next autumn.
Rest in peace.