There seems to be a serious shortage of strawberries in Oxford at the moment. I keep making dramatic plans to go punting and to have summer picnics in scenic places like Christchurch Meadows, but it's just not the same without strawberries. I thought the supermarkets would be bursting with them, but no: Sainsburys on St Giles didn't even have a gap on the shelf, and the Co-op in Jericho was looking a bit sorry for itself in the fruit department in general. Maybe I should have ventured to the big Sainsburys, or even followed my own advice and gone to a greengrocers stall, but the hassle of rushing around trying to find strawberries really goes against the implied chilled-out-ness of lazing around in long graze delicately nibbling at the red beauties.
I had a think about the reasons for this calamity: the poor economy, bad harvets, rising fuel prices meaning luxury goods are lower priority, a mass strawberry buying craze...and then it struck me: it's the uprising of smoothies! Look at a bottle of Innocent smoothie: it'll tell you how many hundreds of strawberries have been ground to a pulp for your pleasures. Go to one of the many smoothie shops in Oxford and watch ten strawberries getting crushed and squeezed to produce a measly drop of liquid. Much as I love smoothies, this is not worth the sacrifice! Bring back strawberries and cream!