Today, I did my first job as a court reporter!!!!!!! Ahhhh!!! I’ve been waiting so long for this day. Who knew that it had arrived already?! For those of you who were wondering about that secret private post of mine written back in October, type in “courtreportingsoon?” into the password part and you can read what my first immediate excitement of finding out that I would be working as a CR soon sounded like. My first job was originally scheduled for Nov 1, but since the legal industry is fickle and cases get switched around every day, my job actually ended up getting cancelled the day before. 😦 I was disappointed about it, but what can you do. November seemed a little slow in terms of jobs and it wasn’t until today that I successfully walked into a job and did it! YAY!
Let me tell you about it. I arrived early to the Department of Justice (through all my shadowing experiences, I never had the chance to step into the DOJ before and I felt nervous about the unfamiliar and not knowing what to expect — would there be enough outlets there to plug in my equipment? What’s the environment like?). I signed in at the reception desk on the 34th floor of the Exchange Tower and the lady behind the glass windows told me to sit on the couches to wait. Usually for an agency, you sign in and are led directly to the room where you’ll be working; no waiting involved. I was feeling nervous.. “Why did I have to wait? How long is this going to take?! I need to set up my equipment well before the counsel members arrive!” Luckily, my stress was limited to 10 minutes when another lady came to get me. She led me on the elevator to another floor and to a hugeeeee conference room with a big projector screen and art pieces on the wall; it could have easily fit 20 people with the number of chairs that were lined up around the room. It was a corner room too so I saw quite a nice view of the downtown Adelaide area.
I happily settled in and set up. There were ample outlets right near the front of the table so it was perfect! (Although I did come prepared with extra extension cords and power bars just in case).
Counsel arrived a little after the scheduled time. I was suddenly overwhelmed for a minute — there were like 10 people walking into the room! Didn’t expect this for my first job. (Actually, half of them were sitting in the back and waiting for their cross-examination to start for the second half, so it wasn’t that bad). I did a small seating chart to make sure I knew who was who for the five that were at the table.
For the first 20 minutes, my fingers were playing a trick on me and had a mind of their own. Then afterwards, my writing was so much better. 🙂
We ended up finishing at noon which was nice. Speaking of nice, all the counsel members were sooo considerate and polite. I felt really fortunate to be working on such a nice job for my first day. One counsel member took the initiative to let me know the names of all the speakers beforehand. Maybe he’s always this helpful? Or maybe my first day CRing shows? Or he actually knew that it was my first day working? Anyway, I felt really respected since they made sure I was ready before they started talking after every recess break. Awesome!
Hehe 🙂 *feeling thankful*
Oh, and one more thing. I had asked one counsel for his business card but he had to go back to his office to retrieve it since he didn’t have any with him. I was packing up in the room and he told me he’d return in 5 mins with the card. I was fine with it and took my time packing up. I waited nearly 30 minutes but he never came back. So I figured he probably forgot and I started to leave. LUCKILY, I bumped into him just as I was waiting for the elevator and he was practically on his knees trying to apologize to me for taking a call and not realizing that I was still waiting. He said if he didn’t catch me, he would have called up his assistant to personally call me to apologize to me. Wow, what a nice man! I was really taken back with how genuinely apologetic and nice he was. In any case, I had his assistant’s number on hand so I could have called her if I ended up needing something. Everything still worked out in the end though! Great day. 🙂