I’m hardly unique in my love for chocolate, but I may be in regard to my ability to accidentally purchase not quite chocolate.

Today, after a bracing New York winter walk, I jammed myself through the doors of a “gourmet” “market” and bought myself what I thought was candy.

Well, kind of.

Sadly, this has happened before. My magpie eye sees Label! Foil! The Word Chocolate! and apparently, that’s all. I miss “-like substance” and “-ish.”

But that’s okay. I’ve already eaten some of my organic coconut palm nectar organic raw cashew pink crystal salt entity, and you know what? It ain’t half bad.

Having grown soft and unsuspecting from the consistently fine weather of LA, being in New York during a frigid February is humbling. I am newly aware of the tiny muscles in my legs that flinch every five seconds as I carefully make my way down the icy sidewalk. This should be a trademarked workout.

Staying Upright! with Joy Osmanski

And yet – earlier today I passed a gentleman who stood in the middle of the sidewalk, one hand holding up his pants, the other palmed against his back, rocking around and muttering. He smelled like cornflakes and milk.

Also – I sidestepped a nanny muscling a behemoth stroller over a slushy mountain. Her expression full of warning, I didn’t stop to help.

And then – the young woman who yanked her boyfriend off to the side, under the awning of a donut shop, and yelled “THAT’S WHAT YOU TOLD ME SHE SAID.”

Still, everyone moving forward, trying not to fall down.

And, legs aching, I sit in the warmth of a dear friend’s home, nibbling what I thought was chocolate.