Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The Courthouse Adventure!

Well, not REALLY.... it was actually a rather long, boring day. It just sounded like an interesting title!!

Poor Morgan..... she received a summons for jury duty back in late February. Being a full-time student, jury duty could potentially be very disruptive to her schedule. She contacted the office by phone, told them her situation, and was told that it had been noted and to please follow up with a letter. This was done -- but we never heard back from the jury duty office about her status.

Yesterday, she called over there, explained her situation again, and was bounced from phone to phone to phone, never getting a real answer. The last person told her that no information would be available until after 6 PM and to call back then. WHAT? So immediately after 6, we called the listed number, and found, to our dismay, that it was a recording of which GROUPS would be required to be present today, not any information on whether or not she had been excused. Of course, all "live" people (and I put that in quotes, because some of them are so slow and dumb, I think they might actually be dead -- or at least brain-dead!) had already left for the day, which left us no option but to quickly change plans for today to include a long drive to the county courthouse. Morgan was NOT thrilled about this.

We needed to get up at 5:30 in order to get out of the house by 6:15, and drove to the courthouse, fortunately hitting almost no traffic. There is very little parking near the courthouse, so they have you park in an outlying parking lot and hop on a shuttle bus from there to the courthouse building. This ran very smoothly and efficiently. We got to the building and got in line to put our bags through X-ray and to go through the metal detectors. Unfortunately, we didn't realize that unless you have actually received a summons, you cannot enter the building until after 8 AM. Great....... Morgan went in the building, and I was left with trying to figure out what to do with myself for an hour! It rained cats and dogs last night, so all the outside benches were SOAKED! No way was I going to sit on those for an hour!

Ultimately, I took the shuttle bus back to the car and just chilled out for a while, then returned to the courthouse. There were SO MANY people in the jury waiting room -- it was full to the brim. Fortunately, the gentleman Morgan ended up sitting next to was a retired police officer and he talked her through everything that was happening, as well as telling her which questions would be most likely to disqualify her!!! While she chose to follow her conscience and answer those questions honestly (good girl!!), it was extremely helpful to have this guy explain what each procedure meant.

She finally got "released" around noon, which I've been told isn't all that bad. It seemed TERRIBLE to me!! I had to sit on a hard church-pew-style bench for hours, and when I got too stiff, walked around a very large, boring building!! Morgan got her lesson in public service, the justice system, and more; I got another lesson in patience and fending off boredom!!!

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