Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Is there such a thing...

... as too much traveling?

I'm pooped! After my week in Moore County, I spent the weekend in Charlotte - hey, NCCRA had a seminar and I was presenting... then drove home to Wake Forest, only to spend the NEXT week driving to and from Nash County every day for another week of criminal court. THEN, at 6:00 a.m. on Saturday morning, I flew for the holiday weekend to Miami to visit my best friend. Had a GREAT time, but come Monday night, I was exhausted! I ended up taking a VACATION day on Tuesday, just to catch up. (Remember, I just started the job, so I don't have that many of that precious commodity.)

I'm finally back up and running like a positive, producing member of society. Transcripts humming along out of the printer, bills being paid, emails being read - and, yes, blogs posted.

Sometimes when the world gives you a holiday, you should take it. Just to breathe!
Hope everyone had a wonderful Memorial Day and remembered to honor those who have served. (I missed the PBS concert, but I did say thanks to an army man in the Hartsfield airport.)

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Moore County - Um, Golf-Town USA

The week of May 12 was a full week of criminal court in Carthage, NC. My assignment was criminal superior court in Moore County, the county seat for those popular golfing destinations of Pinehurst and Southern Pines.

This was the first full week of reporting I've done since I started the job in February. Five full days - with juries deliberating and all kinds of sentencings, pleas, and parole violations.

By the time Friday rolled around, I had already received two notices of appeal (from guilty verdicts in jury trials) and one trial was dismissed for insufficiency of the evidence. It was 4:30 p.m. and I finally started packing up and gearing up for my next adventure.

But let me say, I really LOVE being a roving reporter for the State. I get to see different courthouses, meet some really great people - the deputy clerks, the bailiffs, the attorneys, and judges - that I would never have had the opportunity to meet otherwise.

The bailiffs were so wonderful to me, greeting me every morning, sharing their lunchroom with me, getting me water when my bottle got low. The Deputy clerk, on Friday, brought me a piece of homemade chocolate iced pound cake. WOW, was that good. She bakes for a local restaurant, and I jokingly said, Hey, if one doesn't look quite right, I'm happy to take a piece off your hands. And, voila, there was a piece of cake on my desk the next morning. I didn't want to eat my lunch first - I wanted to swallow that cake whole. Man, some folks are great cooks!

I had the opportunity to stay in town as the courthouse was over 50 miles from my base courthouse - and close to 80 miles from my house. I stayed at a Homewood Suites. Breakfast and dinner every night. More nice people.

If you ever have the opportunity to visit a small-town courthouse, you will be pleasantly surprised by the folks you'll meet there working for you and the cause of justice. I can't wait to get assigned to Moore County again!

However, next week I'm going back to Nash County, where I started my first two weeks on the job. It's going to feel pretty good getting back and seeing my first friends on the job.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Not much traveling....

Well, the traveling court reporter hasn't done much traveling this month. I've stayed local - spent some time at the NC Business Court reporting motions hearings. I attended an interesting Case Management Session in Vance County last Friday.

Next week, though, will be fun. I'm headed south to Moore County (think: Golf - that's where Southern Pines and Pinehurst are located) to spend the week reporting the criminal session of superior court. I'm told - but there's no guarantee - that I'll get transcripts. However, meeting the different folks in the courthouses makes this job so much fun.

Driving 90 minutes one way, though - considering I'm north of Raleigh - in rush hour should be a challenge. The truck has just gotten an oil change and tire rotation, so we're ready to go.

Woo-hoo. I wonder if I should try to play a round of golf... well, probably not since I've not played any golf since I was 15 years old. But I bet the area will be beautifully lush.