Courthouse thoughts

I had jury duty this past week. It’s my civic duty, and I didn’t want to defer my service week. (Again. I was originally called to serve in March.) It was well spent. Citizens have a fair process.

Being in an old building certainly isn’t without woe — How do I wash my hands? The hot and cold spigots are on opposite sides from each other.  I cannot mix temperatures.

But fortunately, I do not have to live or work there, so the other things — lack of air flow, lack of central air, acoustic issues, no leg room in the jury box — fade away once I leave.

The courthouse has several rules. The rule that really bums me out:

No photography inside the courthouse

The history of the building is so interesting (did you know this is the third courthouse for the county?), the artwork is so compelling, and the architectural details so unique, that it’s too bad that we cannot record it, share it with those who cannot personally visit, etc. I hope a photo history book of the building exists somewhere. (The rules of the courthouse are good, by the way. Safety is important.)

I did take a few photos downtown. When we had a break on the first day of the criminal trial, I took most of the hour and a half to wander outside the courthouse.

downtown smokestack Des Moines
Look! It’s a smokestack! I will have to learn more about this smokestack’s history.
emc, financial center, Des Moines
Our downtown is a mixture of old and new construction. Love that. Proud of that.

I had lunch in nearby Capital Square at a coffee place called Sidebar (how clever). The floral arrangement included this green puffball that I had to remove and examine up close. It had a long stem, and looked like an allium until I touched it.

green puffball, sidebar
Isn’t this fun?
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