One of the most popular greeting is «good luck». We wish good luck on New Year's day, on day of birth, at new work, when our close friends and beloveds stay before painful or horrific experience.
How often our wishes come true? Not always. Ups and downs occur during the year; new work brings not only success, but stress also and sometimes disappointment. Not all diseases are curable.
Every medal has two sides. Reverse of good luck is bad luck. And what is the cause of that? Laziness, procrastination, apathy, indecision, many would say. And evil deeds of other people. And concurrence of circumstances. And bla-bla-bla. What kind of failures we produce ourselves, what depends on us, how to cope with that, and how get over bad luck? What sense can we make of bad luck? These questions are important to all of us.
My biggest interest is my work. What kind of lucky days are for lawyers? Those when lawyer wins a case in court, new client comes, interesting case starts, client is satisfied with results...
Two years ago I got new complicated but interesting case. Lucky day! I immediately went to the matter. Few days later the case was in court. Days passed in preparing to court hearing, writing motions and other documents.
One of these days I came home late, parked car near the house as usually. I felt tired and wanted to get to the bed. Night time the car's alarm went off, I got up and looked out the window. It seemed ok with car. Perhaps the cat jumped on the car? Of course, I was unhappy that I was woken up at four o'clock, especially when I needed rest. But I should make sure that everything is in order. Sleepy I somehow got dressed and went outside. The car was directly under the lamp pole. Everything looked normal. I was already going to go back, when noticed that there is no reflective surface on the rear side window. I stared, the window was absent. Have I forgotten to close? Then I saw small fragments on the ground and understood that the window is broken. My dream had vanished as if by magic. I began to remember what was in the car. My small bag! I left the bag behind the seat, considering that it was empty, not visible from the street and it was not anything of value.
Through the broken window I convinced that there was no bag. In haste, I began to remember what was in the bag. First I thought there were a wallet with a small amount of money and a bank card, mobile phone in the bag. It's nothing. I will block my bank card. I have another phone. My e-book! This is worse... I need new one, and downloaded books were useful. But in that moment I remembered that my flash card with prepared documents could be in the bag! These documents were prepared on different computers, including in client's office. The possibility of losing the flash cards disturbed me the most. I had not enough time to recover all files before court hearing!
I called militia. After meeting with patrol I checked my laptop. There were no documents. I went to the office. I found neither flash card nor files. I was shocked.
I had no desires to make excuses to my client. The case was most important to him. But I did not want to do files second time also, because I realized how much time I have spent before. In militia capabilities to capture the thief I did not believe. It was confirmed by my visit to the officer who worked with my application. He gave me to understand that such trivial cases he has a lot. I did not expect another reply. So I tried to paddle my own canoe. Of course, I realized that practically I have no chance, but I had to work it out.
First, I met with local guys in the area of my residence and asked to identify person who could commit such theft and to offer him to sell me flash card. I visited the radio market the hope of finding my phone and e-book. But without any result. From the sellers on the market I knew that they do not sell used flash cards. So I understood that a thief will not sell my flash card.
Few days later a local man called me said that during last 10 days in area of my resistance there were committed 3 crimes of stealing from the cars with broken windows. Bags, laptops, some small things were stolen. I offered to make ambush together with other victims and catch the criminal. But he talked me out of that because according to his knowledge more than one person has committed these crimes, and the value of the stolen is not worth it. But for me, it was worth! My time, my work, money, reputation...
Eventually, I had no choice but start to create new documents in the case. I was busy with that next few days but unexpectedly I got a call from the militia and officer reported that this night militia patrol stopped a young man. He had bag with gloves, pocket flashlight and small hammer. A full «set» for committing thefts from cars! And my flash card was found with him. A man could not explain where he got this flash card from. Militiamen opened files and found my name, than they established that I notified to militia about stealing. In this way my flash card came to me.
When I became acquainted with the materials of the case, I learned that the thief was 28 years old. He was 3 times convicted of numerous small thefts, like mine. Last time he was released from prison six months before. Of course, he had not any work. He explained that he wanted to steal something and went from car to car until saw my bag. He sold e-book and phone and kept flash card for himself. So if to make long story short, it was trivial theft.
Of course, I was lucky if to say about capture the thief. I can not explain why man who was several times in prison went on the new crime with the stolen thing. I admit there was my fault also. As a proverb says, opportunity makes the thief. My material damage was not high and it won't be ever compensated. But this story has allowed me to be in victim's shoes. I have lost time to eliminate the consequences of crime, not to mention the loss of energy. I was several times in militia department and in court, waited for calls, legal actions and court hearings. Young investigator, prosecutor and experienced judge made mistakes during process. But I won't analyze the work of the militia in my case: legal grounds of detention and examination of young man's bag and pockets. I admit that something could be illegal. But I was not this man's attorney. I was victim.
As a lawyer I deal with civil cases and criminal every day. But I got additional evidence that I haven't any immunity from accidents that I see in everyday practice. Prior to this event I was skeptical about militia capabilities to find criminals. But now I know that crime may be solved. Even if it happens completely by chance. But in any case, the victim has to move heaven and earth, must to do, and not merely to suffer.
We all can meet unfavorable moments. We may not respond to them frequently. But we are always responsible for our attitude of what we will do: feel keen regret, take action, give vent to anger, ask for help, seek solace, wait, be up and doing. As you see we have alternatives for choosing. Everything that happens to us allows us to make best use of our capacities. It depends on will and brain. Even if we can not change the situation we can fill it with meaning. In this respect everyone is the author of every personal story.
Friends, we are here because of public speaking. In terms of public speaking good or bad luck in our life is only introduction to personal story. The body and conclusion depend on us.