I get summoned for jury duty a lot. In the last four years it has been at least six times! And still I have yet to actually serve on one jury.
Last year I got two summons (what is the plural, anyway?) for the week of and the week after Thanksgiving. I refused the first and accepted the second, only to have court closed during the horrendous storm that took out the power every where. I had one more day of obligation when court reopened, was called for a panel, and rejected.
Then I was summoned for county court downtown and got my bus schedule all figured out, only to call in over the weekend and find out I was not needed.
Last spring I was summoned to superior court, but we had travel plans so I delayed it until November. Sure enough, November neared and I got two more, one for the delayed service, one for a district court. I rejected the second one, and this morning I reported to the Kent Regional Justice Center for duty.
That meant getting up much earlier than I usually do as a retired person, driving through wind and rain, waiting for a train, and finding parking. But I was there by 8 AM like a good girl. After checking in we sat for half an hour before anything happened. Then we got our general instructions. By 10:00 I was getting antsy. They had identified a panel of 50 for a trial, but those people were still waiting, too. I had to admire those around me, several hundred of them, who were waiting so patiently. I was not.
I got up and started wandering around, staying in proximity, hoping I would hear any announcement. A break was called so I wandered a bit farther. I got quickly back to my seat when I heard another panel being called. I heard everything except #1. Well, guess who was #1. I got a special "where are you" invitation. Great. But at least I was on the move, headed for some action.
We were to hear a criminal case, DUI and driving with a suspended license. As the voir dere questions were being asked, I knew I would be rejected again, and I was. You see, my lovely son-in-law is a law enforcement officer, and he gets me out of jury duty. I'm not sure if I like being rejected, but by 12:00 today I could tell I just did not have the patience for sitting around waiting for the snail's pace of the law to carry on.
I thought of the phrase "They also serve who only stand (sit) and wait". Well, I served, I guess. When we who were rejected reported back to the jury room, we were released. We do not have to report back tomorrow. We're done. We rejoiced quietly in our freedom and headed out into the storm.