It's close to midnight, and I'm up too late as usual, even though I've been up since 4am, and I'm talking too much (I do that sometimes, don't I?).
I had a unique experience today. I was a witness, not an expert witness, but a friend witness in a post divorce trial. Not sure of the outcome yet, but it was intense. What was supposed to be a half hour turned into 4 hours of an already busy call Monday. It was so toxic I was ready to pitch a tent for my friend. I've never been to the Pulaski County Courthouse, except to obtain marriage degrees.
Despite a dose of beta blockers I was nervous as hell. Sitting outside waiting, talking to other witnesses. At one point I learned my testimony might be blocked by the opposing counsel. They tried for over an hour, to no avail. I think they thought they could stall long enough that I would exasperatedly return to work. They thought wrong. I was strengthened by their determination to silence me.
The lunch in the basement of the courtroom was primitive. Ham or turkey sandwich, or choose from a variety of junk food. I found a Nature Valley oats and honey granola bar, and a large bottle of cold water. The plainclothes detective with handcuffs emerging from his back pocket moved aside so I could pay. I approached the counter. "Do you take a card? Check?"
"No, only cash. But I'll take your purse."
"Ha, I get lots of compliments. I'm keeping the purse. But I've got to go get some cash from my friends."
"I'll buy your lunch." This, from the detective. I thanked him profusely. Small courtesies in a long hard day seem overly gratuitous, and my appreciation swelled to astronomical heights.
When I was finally called I was so exhausted from lack of decent lunch and afternoon coffee I was ready for anything. I swore in, settled on the stand, and fielded questions through the microphone from both counsel. It was like a TV show - but I've never much preferred lawyer/court TV shows so I felt at a disadvantage. Maybe that played well for my friend. I hope so. She deserves it.
Despite objections and overrulings I think I got my point across. I could go into way more detail but I value confidence. Last question:
"So you don't think it was too much for her to ask where her son was."
"I'm a mother. I like to know where my kids are."