Saturday, 25 June 2016

Surviving College: Legal Attachment

It is super surreal that I have been on holiday for a whopping five weeks already. Wasn't it just yesterday that I was super unprepared for my Equity and Trusts final? Confessions of a college student, why don't you?

Well, I am on some genuine feel good hormones right about now so I figured why not ride on them to fuel me through writing this article.

I might as well just put it out there that I am not quite done with my legal attachment just yet. This is just a reminder that possibly, the worst is yet to come.

So, I was attached to Kibera Law Courts. The actual reception we had was now that I think about it rather warm. Security gave us a  point in a vague direction but it is not the what they told us, it's more of how they told us, you dig? It makes all the difference.

On the real though they did not expect us. You would think that with my email inbox blowing up with subject UPDATED CLINICAL ATTACHMENT LIST every two seconds the HR department surely must have gotten at least a peek, but no in the words of the executive officer and I quote "... this is like a bad joke...". Although it may seem like I am throwing a baobab tree's worth of shade, in retrospect, the blame could maybe even should be thrown to say, I don't know my faculty. What would you do if you saw a good 33 souls showing up at your doorstep without so much as a heads up?

In true ambushed fashion they basically just told us to find something to do between the courts and  the registry more emphasis on the registry. Knowing me, I like to jump in both feet first so the  registry sounded like the ultimate challenge. When I look back on it, I clearly went into this expecting a whole  lot mostly in terms of hospitality; the whole shabang a warm smile, couple of handshakes, formal intros, it happened alright just not at the  expected time. Not to say that the cold shoulder was the order of the day but it was one of those, "Toto, I've a feeling we are not in Kansas anymore,"  vibes.

They started warming up to us after two hours, give or take, and I have to say the work was hella basic and in this case, that was a good thing. Filling in files  receiving  files not rocket science at all.There was an attempt to organize us later in the day , break us down into smaller groups which for the most part worked.

The highlight of the first week? There was a cheeky little public holiday and it could not have come at a better time, nuff said: I am a basic lazy bum.

On the fourth day we got to meet our magistrate. I have no recollection of my sentiments at the time but she turned out to be lit. Now, she, she understands hospitality. Warm smile-check, intro-check and a couple of ground rules...see, easy, peasy and not even sleazy.

Most importantly, the legal proceedings. The first time in court gets real old real quick but I will say the first few minutes that fish fresh out of water feel, super real. Then you get the swing of things, basic procedure being mentions a whole lot of them, a couple of hearings and on Monday's there's a side of drunk and disorderly petty cases. Cases that are worth your entertainment? Sexual offences and assault. To sum it up a fire prosecution witness is all you need to keep you attentive. But be warned, when the lawyers get to asking the tough questions, a never ending cycle of answers mostly which are repetitive begins.

Flash forward to week two. I only had to go two out of five times, apparently my magistrate had a retreat and French leave was in order. Didn't  I tell you she was lit? Of course not squarely because of this but excuse me while I slide that in there as a contributing factor.

Before I go ahead and write a memoir out of a four week internship, I'll see you on the other side with part two. But with such a strong start, could anything possibly go wrong?

Have a good one!

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