My blog title for today is another way of saying I went to Traffic Court last week. My court appointment wasn’t until April 19th, and then that got delayed, but I wanted to get a feel for the place, get the lay of the land, and dip my toes in the judicial pond before that.
I was pleasantly surprised.
My SIL and I got lost, so we were a wee bit late on arrival, but no worries. His honor was just finishing up with the putting on of his official robes when we walked in, all dewey-eyed and new to this gig and hoping to find a seat in the back where we could quietly and covertly observe.
But no! Instead, we were bottle-necked at the chambers door by none other than His Honor, himself.
Judge Understanding (not his real name, but how I see this man post-session), listened to us spill my concerns with the best of good humor. That’s right, we double teamed him!
Then we shared with him these facts:
Got a ticket!
No signs were posted.
How can ya do that?
Hoping for dismissal.
Want to observe tonight.
Getting our feel for how you do things here in teeny, tiny town America.
Is that okay with you?
His Honor said, “Sounds like you’re ready to present your case. Let’s do this tonight!”
I wasn’t expecting that. “Well, okay. Are you sure?”
“Look out there, ladies. We don’t exactly have a crowd tonight.”
He was right: Three men, one woman is all; quick work for a seasoned judge, so we went with it.
Officer Paynin McBackside wasn’t there, which was just fine by me (that one’s a real sour puss!).
We sat. We heard. Excuses.
Some lame. Others understandable. Almost all looked defeated. One not. Fines levied anyway. Next!
Man, did we love this guy! Judge Understanding is the best!! Personable. Reasonable. Funny!!! My kinda judge.
It was my turn (dun, dun, dun!!!)
Not having Officer McBackside there helped with my stress levels. Not having an uptight and unreasonable judge hearing my case helped even more. Having my buddy with me helped most of all.
No, wait, having my Friend in the Sky with me helped most of all!
I started. I explained about no signs being posted in the area where I was “caught” speeding. I was animated and passionate about the fact that I was the party that had been wronged by the state of NY, not the other way ’round. I explained the only sign visible from my driving lane indicated a speed that was ten miles higher than what I was ticketed for and I showed His Honor pictures I had conscientiously taken in my defense.
That’s right, this girl comes to court ready!!!
His Honor kept the pictures and guess what? He’s submitting them with a letter to the NYS authority, petitioning them to put up new signs.
So there, NYS!
His Honor agreed that I should not have gotten a ticket for that rate of speed. Whew! He agreed!!!
I did, however, get a speeding ticket. [Insert frown-y face]
Buttttt…it was much lower than it would have been. Much lower!
I am so happy to be putting this whole episode in my rear view mirror, as I slowly drive away from this time in my life. Sooo happy! Everything turned out for the best with traffic court. Afterward, I felt good, my SIL felt good, His Honor seemed to feel good about doing good for me, and his assistant definitely felt good as I handed her my credit card!
Upon making my payment, teeny, tiny town America got a little more casheesh with which to build bridges and plug up potholes in the future.
I got two points on my license!
I also got a printed receipt from the court, plus I got to pay a $4.99 processing fee for using my credit card. What? Again, I’m doing them a favor and I have to pay for it? So not cool!
I wish instead of building speed traps on secondary roads these little burgs would sell scratchers and pay for their municipal projects that way. I bet they would collect a whole lot more money, and maybe then they would leave the normal Janes on the road alone and let them get to their dentist appointments without stopping them and giving them a speeding ticket.
It’s not like I’m some speed demon, for crying out loud. I’m a glamourous granna, don’t ya know?!
I did feel heard, respected, and helped last week in that teeny, tiny town America court so that’s something!
Have you ever gotten a speeding ticket? Was your Honor honorable and fair?