I never received a subpoena to appear in court. Because I work for my company - and was designated as the expert witness - I had no choice but to appear in court. Unlike the other witnesses that have been called to testify in this trial. They all received subpoenas.
Unless they were independent expert witnesses. And then, they just received a fat check for showing up on time and talking the jury in to a stupor of boredom about something that they know so well, they have received the designation of "expert."
This whole court experience is turning my brain to absolute mush.
We didn't have court today. But between Monday and Tuesday, I've been on the stand for almost six grueling hours, and I'm not even close to being finished. Monday, and again Tuesday, our attorney conducted their direct examination. Followed by the opposing counsel who conducted their cross-examination. Followed by our counsel with more questions. Followed by opposing counsel redirecting questions. Followed by our counsel. Followed by the opposing counsel.
That went on.
It is so difficult because the various attorneys will ask a question that you want to respond to in full, but they just want a YES or NO answer.
But ... But ... there's more to it than just a yes or no answer.
And yet, you don't get your chance to talk about all the details, even though they are PARAMOUNT to understanding the entire picture. And you can't even try to talk because if you do, the attorneys will say, "Objection, Unresponsive" and the Judge will say something like, "Sustained, Strike from the Record."
Keep in mind, I haven't made that mistake of talking out of turn. I've learned from watching the
I've watched the judge tell every single witness, "Please do not touch the microphone. Please sit normally and talk. You do not need to lean forward and yell. I will adjust the volume from my control panel." So I knew not to lay one single finger on the microphone before I took the stand - because I watched at least five people before me,
Since I've now been a part of this trial for the past eight days, when I'm not in the courtroom, all I can hear running through my mind is, "Objection!" Followed by, "Sustained."
Except for when I'm asleep and am having a nightmare.
That's when I hear, "Objection!" Followed by, "Overruled. You may answer the question." But then I realize, good Lord, the string of objections has made me so confused, I completely forget the question and now I have no idea what I'm supposed to answer.
So I ask them to repeat the question and it is again objected to, because the attorney didn't ask the question the EXACT same way it had been asked before. So this "Objection!" followed by "Sustained!" goes on for another few minutes, before the attorney finally gets it right and then, I hear "Overruled, you may answer the question", except I missed the question and the process repeats itself.
In my nightmare, I stand up and yell, "WHY ARE WE HERE?! WHO CALLED ALL THESE LAWYERS IN THE FIRST PLACE?! I HAVE AN ENTREPRENEUR HUSBAND AT HOME, ALONE, WITH FOUR CHILDREN UNDER THE AGE OF FIVE AND A NEW CAT NAMED OLIVER!! ONLY GOD KNOWS WHAT HE IS GOING TO DO NEXT!! WHAT HAVE I DONE TO DESERVE THIS?! HAVE YOU PEOPLE NO MERCY?!"
I just hope we're out of here before Christmas.
On Monday night, Charlie called to tell me that the whole cat thing was just a joke. Although they did see a cat that looked just like our cat, Bob, and the children really wanted it - and chose the name Oliver - he said they didn't actually bring the cat home. He just thought it would be as funny as canned ham to tell me that they did.
Yeah. Ha Ha. Funny like a heart attack.
Still, the whole "joke" was a little too believable, so rather than take any chances for what kind of life altering decisions my husband might make during my absence this week, I upgraded my room from one king to two queens and invited the whole family up.
(But mostly, I invited them up because I missed them. Really badly.)
For the past two days, Charlie and the kids have been camping out in my hotel room and swimming in the indoor/outdoor pool. It's been a real hoot to see our little children running around and playing, amidst people in fancy business attire with cell phones and laptops. It's especially funny to see how people in fancy business attire respond to being trapped in an elevator for a ride from the 15th floor to the Lobby, with chatty preschoolers who will talk to them about anything ranging from what their name is to what color underwear they have on?
Nothing eases the tension in an elevator like a herd of four-year-olds.
Today, we had the day off from court so we visited some famous spots around town, took a harbor cruise and then, we all went out for dinner. When we arrived at the upscale restaurant (because we couldn't find anything less formal within a 10-mile radius) Charlie asked if the hostess could seat us outside on the patio, where we might cause less of a distraction to the fellow diners. His request was denied because apparently the patio was reserved for a larger party that would be arriving shortly.
But less than three minutes after we were seated inside at a beautiful table set with candles and various sized wine glasses, when the kids were wearing their white linen napkins like pirate hats and yelling, "AYE MATEY!!" and Henry was gearing up for a fit, the management came over and very graciously escorted us outside to our own private patio.
It was lovely.
I will admit - the first few days of being on my own were nice. I enjoyed the peace and quiet. I enjoyed the elegant meals and lack of crying - whining - and fighting. But after the third day, I felt so empty being away from my family. And it made me physically sick to arrive home late Friday night, only to pack up and leave again, first thing Monday morning.
Although it's been a bit loud and chaotic at times having six people in a single hotel room, it's been great having everyone here. For the past two nights, once we get the kids settled in to bed, Charlie and I will migrate out in to the hall with oversized pillows to sit upon, while we share a bottle of wine. The fact that my family is giving this otherwise hell week the resemblance of an exotic vacation, truly makes me believe that having loved-ones nearby is nothing short of magic.
Anything is doable ... so long as they are by my side.