Wednesday, March 25, 2009

To our one and only pie lady, Eileen Blake

No, no, no, no, no. I still can't believe it. Eileen Blake, the hero of the Vineyard, the woman I would have paid bundles of money to make my wedding pie...passed away in August of 2008. And I didn't even find out until now.
It started after I read Annie's post about getting published (congratulations by the way, Annie, I can't wait to read ithe issue) I looked around and the more I looked, the more I thought about submitting. I was reading the contributor's bios and was very intrigued by all the mentioned pie. Upon reading submission guidelines, I discovered that it was a rule to include your favorite pie in the attached email. I thought for a moment of what I would put and immediately came to an answer: Eileen Blake's blueberry peach pie. Heaven on Earth. I thought of how much I wanted to go back to Martha's Vineyard and then remembered the facebook group that had been created long ago and decided to take a look. And then, my heart gave an uncomfortable, painful thud when I saw, posted on the group's wall by another member, "I'm sorry to report that Eileen Blake died two weeks ago, August 1, 2008. I'm headed to the Vineyard in a week, and I can't believe I won't be able to have one of her delicious pies."
I couldn't believe it. I always thought she'd be the big toe on your foot or a pinky on your hand. You don't really think about either that much, but you always assume they'll be there whenever you need them. I thought that our remarkable island 'pie lady' would always be there for me to stop by for a slice of apple or strawberry rhubarb. Eileen Blake loved the Vineyard and lived there for 40 years. It was in 1973 that she began her business, Eileen Blake’s Pies & Otherwise. She was 73 when she died.

I remember taking this picture when Lil, her dad, and I went to check if there was any Tollhouse cookie pie. We laughed because we could hear this man asking the same question from our car.
I hope she knows how loved and missed she was and is.
Rest in peace, Eileen Blake.

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