I had plans for these Gariguette strawberries which included strawberry ice cream, iced strawberry fool or even strawberry soufflé, but they remained ideas rather than becoming fact. The consensus of opinion was for the purist approach, so our first strawberries of the year were enjoyed with a sticky, home made, meringue and crème fraiche. It has always seemed strange to me that strawberries attain their zenith on day one and immediately commence a downward trajectory culminating in the tastelessness of the mid summer fruit. That will be the time for strawberry fool and other confections, but right now it’s bareback strawberry season. Strawberries and wasps are an unfortunate seasonal pairing which serve to increase my dislike of the latter and decrease my desire to eat the former outside.Yesterday, however, I had an episode of admiration for a wasp, which is unusual as they are not amongst my favourite creatures, whilst sitting enjoying a glass of wine in the garden. I had noticed some wasps buzzing in and out of some niches in the stone wall of the house and, having experienced the expense of getting rid of a wasp nest in that very wall, went to inspect the niche that so interested one particular wasp. Inside the niche was a neatly constructed tunnel leading no doubt to a nest. The house is stone, as is the garden, so I had no trouble in finding some small rocks that fitted into the niche, effectively blocking ingress and egress. Within a short time the wasp returned and, although bemused by the disappearance of the front door of his new house, begun an intensive search of an alternative way to access his/her loved ones. After a short time of watching this determined little creature, Jenny and I retired to the other end of the garden feeling that the approach of “out of sight, out of mind” might assuage our guilt. Each time I returned to the house for a refill, which was often as wasp worrying is thirsty work, there he/she was inspecting every tiny possibility, even following me inside to check out the possible approach from that direction. To be honest I nearly caved in and removed the rock from the entrance in a very suitable Paschal gesture, but only nearly. Very much later in the day, after the real work in the garden had been completed, we sat down again by the wall, wasp forgotten. The familiar buzzing made me turn my head to see that the wasp had recruited a much smaller wasp to effect an entry through the tiniest of cracks in the defences. For the moment I have left things as they are whilst I weigh up the odds. Will guilt or fear prevail?