Well, it’s done. I had my teleconference court date this morning.
What a waste of time.
I figured we would have one of two results. Either the judge would look at our vandal’s claims against me and my defense, and throw the whole thing out, or we would get another court date.
I don’t think a judge was even on the call. Just a moderator, going through the docket. She first went through those files that had lawyers, then the employer related ones, then finally the rest. Our vandal’s suit against us was top of the third list, so we were done relatively quickly.
We have a hearing date in July, in person.
Well, at least they think we won’t be locked down anymore by next summer, but who knows if that will change before then.
Among the things the moderator told counsel for the previous files, that applied to everyone else as well, was instructions on what to bring for the in person court dates. This included all documentation, including printed out photographs (no bringing a laptop for a photographic slide show), in triplicate – one copy each for themselves, the judge and the opposing party. Which means nothing gets filed in advance, as would normally be the case. Which means no one gets to see the documentation in advance and respond, or prepare, appropriately. Even the judge will be seeing this documentation for the first time, in session. For those with audio or visual presentations, they were asked to bring the equipment necessary to play or display the files.
As for the hearing date, our vandal was asked if he would have witnesses, and he said he would have two. ??? When I was asked, I said I had no idea that was an option, but that I could bring up to two witnesses. I probably could bring three, but that would include my mother, and it would be just too much for her.
And that was it. Our part of the call was done.
Once I finished with the call, typed up my notes and printed them off for my files, I sent an email to update my siblings, then phoned my mother to update her. She was frustrated, too. She also asked if she could be there in July. !!! I told her that yes, she could be present as an observer if she wanted, but that would depend on what restrictions are still in place. It would also depend on her own health and mobility, and if she physically feels up to making the trip, but she acknowledged that from the start.
Then I made a call to my LegalShield office and am expecting a return call from my lawyer either today or tomorrow. Unfortunately, the office is not in this province. If I did want to have a lawyer representing me in court, they would find a local one for me, but we don’t have the money for a lawyer. All of our “un-allocated funds” in our budget has been going into improving things around here (including trying to set aside funds for a new roof), or fixing vehicles!
It blows me away that our vandal is going through with this, and has found people willing to go along with it. I can make a pretty good guess as to who his witnesses are, and I am guessing that it has to do with my defense that included a list of all the things we know (or that my brother could remember) he’s taken from the farm, totaling over $45,000 in estimated value. Which is fine. I’m not counter suing him, since he didn’t take those from me. He took them from my mother. If he wants to waste his time trying to prove any of it belonged to him, all that does is bolster my own defense. Which, simply put, is that I don’t own, nor claim to own, anything here, and that I had already told him that he could take what was his, if he could prove ownership. Of the stuff he listed that he claims are his, which he thinks is worth $13,000, he’s claiming things that aren’t his, and of the stuff that he actually does have some claim to was abandoned here so long ago, they have rotted away to the point that they’re barely worth anything even as scrap metal. Especially right now, when the scrap metal prices are so horrible. Other things he’s claiming are his (they aren’t) are just plain petty squabbling. He was also claiming things that he’d never claimed were his until I saw them on his list.
All this because I filed a restraining order against him after catching him trying to break the gate again.
I look forward to any advice my lawyer gives me.
With the cold we’ve been having, I have been negligent in switching out the memory cards on the trail cams, but after this call, I figured it needed to be done.
Though it was later than usual, it was still about -32C with a wind chill of about -42C (-25.6F/-43.6F).
The heated water bowl had a thick layer of frost and ice on top!
The kitties were out and about, including Creamsicle Jr., but I was unable to get a look at his face to see how his eye was doing.
I very quickly realized that, in my rush to get outside, I forgot to wear two pairs of pants. There wasn’t much of a wind, but at these temperatures, it was still brutal!
I brought the cameras inside, one at a time, to change out their batteries and switch the memory cards. I knew the old camera’s batteries were already getting low, so they were due. The status bar on the new camera had showed full, the last time I switched out the memory cards and had to use my hands to warm it up so I could see the screen inside. With this cold, however, I decided to switch the batteries, anyhow, and just hang on to the used ones to switch back again the next time I have to do this.
Even with being able to warm up by bringing each camera inside, by the time I finished putting the new camera back up, the cold was really hitting me! Butterscotch had joined me while I was putting the new camera back, and was just begging to be picked up! I carried her back to the house and she was just rubbing her face all over my chin, loving the ride! The poor things are so chilled – and yet, they’re still going out in the cold, and not just for food and water!
Though the temperatures are still expected to be extremely cold for a few more days, after the call this morning, I would not be surprised if our vandal still decided to show up and cause problems, so I felt it was really important to have the cameras in good working order.
I had a surprise when checking the files, in that there actually were files! 😀 The old camera died after a day, which I expected, considering the batteries were already so low. Much to my shock, the new camera, which has stopped working outright in colder temperatures before, actually kept on going and even recorded files while I was carrying it to the house! All in hues of pink. When the camera gets cold, all the files are overcast in pink! 😀 It even got some night shots, though with a bright red low battery warning. Stills only, no video. Which is better than nothing, that’s for sure!
So I’m increasingly happy with the new camera again. Some of the files showed an internal temperature of -25C/-11F which is well below when the camera stopped working completely, before. Interestingly, when I switched memory cards, this time it did NOT ask me to reformat the new card. Which makes me suspect that it might have nothing to do with the card needing formatting (I’ve tried using different settings when formatting the cards on the desktop, to no avail) and more to do with the cold making it harder for the camera to read the card. Once inside and starting to warm up, it could read the card fine.
We shall see how things go. Hopefully, the cold will keep our vandal indoors. I would not be surprised if he starts calling my mother and siblings again, like he did after he saw the defense I’d filed.
As my mother put it when I talked to her this morning, “we need this like a whole in a bridge” (translated from Polish). At least we could get a laugh over the Polish and English versions of conveying the same frustration!
For now, it’s time to move on to more pleasant things. Which my next post will be about!