Ice cream is the secret to a long and happy life. My dad, an almost daily eater of ice cream is, at 94, my evidentiary proof. If red wine drinkers have convinced the world of the medicinal argument for their lust, I’ll go with the longevity argument for mine.
So, I eat ice cream, leaning toward anything with salted caramel in it.
Safeway, our regional grocery chain, has produced a variety of private-label ice creams. My first discovery was a premium, pint-sized flavor that delivered pure satisfaction and was—bonus!—much cheaper than the branded competition. It became my “go-to” flavor.
And then, suddenly, the ice cream was gone. How could something as basic and essential as ice cream suddenly go missing? At first, I figured they simply hadn’t restocked. But when week after week passed, I realized they had casually dropped it; not just my flavor, but the entire label, axed. I felt adrift.
I was forced to try other ice creams. I dabbled with Ben & Jerry’s, had a couple of flings with Talenti, and freezer-flirted with Hagen Dazs. None matched my memory of the Safeway flavor I’d acquired an addiction to.
And then…Safeway came out with Salted Caramel Butter Pecan. It smothered the tongue with a cold, sweet, salty caramelly flavor, and left a delicious after-glow. Cool comfort food. I was, again, in ice cream heaven.
It turns out Safeway’s ice cream has a life-cycle and a termination date. And Salted Caramel, like the flavor before it, reached its finale. It ended with the same whimper, suddenly no longer stocked, its shelf space eventually taken over by new, low-calorie brands (really?). Had I known they were doing away with it, I might’ve stockpiled a supply.
Instead, I quietly realized the Safeway ice cream saga had some lessons for me: Don’t get too attached and enjoy it while it’s here.
Because, based on history, the ice cream I love today will go away. Who would’ve figured I’d find a lesson in “letting go” in the freezer aisle….