At last meeting of ToastCreckersClub I decided to deliver a short speech as quotation of the day. This quotation is from Indian leader Mahatma Gandhi:
"First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win."
These words resonated with my workday. I had court hearing in the small city near Kyiv. My client complained of wrong decision taken by investigator in criminal case. But local judge and investigator played the same game. I was an alien in this court.
The judge demonstrated indifference to my arguments. His some remarks sounded rude. Then investigator talked. He said that my client is wrong, detracts his attention for nothing but he does the darndest.
"Ok, now I want to see some documents of case", said the judge.
Investigator replied that he can show all necessary documents.
It must be said that the case consists of 3 volumes: two 250-page volumes and one 100-page.
"Show me the protocol...", said the judge.
"Yes, Your Honour", answered investigator taking one volume and opening on necessary page at once.
"Show me the letter...", said the judge.
"Here you are. That's the letter you've asked for", said investigator giving another volume that was opened on necessary page.
I understood that judge asked only those documents that can prove investigator's efforts in case.
"Show me...", the judge called new document. And investigator was ready to give him new opened volume at a word.
At-a-boy investigator! He knows the whole case, all documents! He doesn't even need time for finding new necessary document! Investigator had so fast reaction in courtroom as Muhammad Ali on boxing ring had.
But I saw that investigator opened pages with green stickers only. The judge called new document and investigator opened new page with green sticker.
"Wait a minute!" I said. "You don't fool me. Why do you ask only documents that are marked by green stickers?"
Investigator's cheeks became red.
"What are you hinting at?" asked the judge with indignation.
"You understand me. Investigator could mark documents that must be asked. You didn't ask about documents that have not stickers... I have right to challenge the judge. And I challenge you because I distrust you".
"Ok, you have right. Do it".
And I did. Of course I had not an illusion about perspective of solving my claim.
Another judge considered the challenge. She had not even 3 volumes of the case. I said about that but without any result. The judge said that it was only my imagination. There is no bargain between the first judge and investigator...
I don't regret about my objection to the judge. I know that I had not any chance to dismiss the first judge. "You scratch my back and I'll scratch yours", as proverb says. Second judge laughed at me. But they must to know that trial can't be a farce. No mockery of a trial!
Not happy day, I thought after court hearing. And I was wrong. Something funny happened. I stayed frustrated in courtroom then militiaman came to me and asked: "Are you married?"
"Why are you asking?"
"One lady is interested to meet with you".
I was intrigued and said: "Where is she and why she doesn't come? How did she recognize me? We are in courtroom where only criminal cases are examined. I could be even criminal suspect..." I joked. It was very funny.
"You look proper and sound appropriate. You are not suspect. She is shy and doesn't come first. But if you want - take it", said militiaman and gave me piece of folded paper.
I looked with interest. There were phone number and name written on it. I turned it over. It was a piece of a pack of cigarettes. Hmm... Smoker... Not my choice.
But it was welcome news. I didn't feel well after two court hearings. But even if you are frustrated, ignored and blown off it's important to remember that failure is never an absolute!