I have largely spent the last two days in the service of Queen and country as a prospective juror. I was summoned to the Sheriff Court in Ayr, not an easy place to reach from where I live. Yesterday, we prospective jurors had all read the booklet, which has promised us tea and coffee – we hung about and hung at the court’s pleasure, and asked for it. Not in Ayr, it seemed. We were turned away just after lunch time, lunchless, to come back today. We returned bright and early today and I nourished the hope that I would either be called onto the jury, or get away by 11, when I could get to the nearby ‘Piskie church for ashes and Eucharist. The jury was chosen by a raffle (they called it something else, but that is essentially how it worked) and the rest of us just had to wait for the start of the trial. We heard two sentences, and saw another accused released on bail, and the clock ticked remorselessly up to eleven and on past it, and way past it.
Finally having claimed my expenses and been set free, I sat in bitter wind and bright sun and considered my options. Go straight home, and whip round the animals and then back to Mauchline by car and two buses to St Mary’s. Very tempting, very indulgent. Or stay in Ayr, look at the Nissan I was considering, and go home and spend the evening working on Mother Ruth’s children’s Passion reading.
The Nissan was the barbed wire fence. I went for it. I rang a very kind friend to come and help me out. I waited for her in the agonisingly cold stunningly beautiful gardens and prayed. I am dust – let go of some of the self importance. Very possibly I am snow too. It feels like it for sure. Dust dry and chilled. Friend’s car was mercifully warm. Virtue was to some degree rewarded as I decided the Note was not for me – it falls between two stools – but the Micra might just do.
I have lots more to say about the court experience (would have posted last night but the power went off just after seven, which is a trial in an electrically heated house) but today is about a penitential Wednesday. And now for the good bit – Ruth’s reading. Oh, and yes, I do know I am mis-applying non-juring.