I had occasion to visit a law court to settle some legal business last week. It was all routine and expected, so no cause for panic, but what did surprise me was the experience itself.
The door to the court was not properly signposted, so I ended up walking right around the building till I found an enquiries desk, and was directed back almost to where I started, LOL.
Walking through the main doors triggers a buzzer mechanism which alerts the two security guards, one male and one female, both very burly indeed, but very, very pleasant. I had to empty the contents of my pockets into a tray to be examined, pass my bag to be checked and then walk through a metal detector. The chap who entered before me was being frisked, a fate which I mercifully escaped :-)
I was directed to go upstairs to a waiting area, where I met my barrister at the appointed time and went through some last minute checks and form-filling, and was sent back out to sit in the waiting area. It was interesting watching what was going on; apart from my self and half a dozen barristers and solicitors, who were dressed smartly, everyone else was either wearing jeans or tracksuit bottoms and hoodies.
It never even occurred to me to attend a court hearing, no matter how insignificant the reason, in anything other than respectable looking clothing, not casual slob-around-the-house clothing. They were lounging around in the waiting area, eating, drinking, chewing gum and playing games on their mobile phones.
I must be getting old....
One barrister approached me and asked if I was there for the house re-possession hearing against a mortgage lender. Mercifully I was not, but I felt so sorry for whoever it was who was indeed facing the loss of their home over the Christmas period. Lord have mercy.....
Once in court, the business was over and done with in less than five minutes; the Judge was so pleasant and as I left, he even wished me a Happy Christmas. For the rest of the day, I couldn't help thinking of everyone else who was there for more distressing reasons, and hoped things went well for them all.