The gavel hit the lectern with a bang and Sgt at Arms Carolle McIntosh began the meeting right on time. With a theme like “Recharging Your Battery” introduced by Chairman Susi Vasseur we were off to an enthusiastic start. With a great mix of humor and wisdom Susi introduced her role and advised us to “rev our jets and bounce back”.
Guest George Hatch was welcomed to the group and the support roles were introduced with Carolle taking on additional roles as Ah Counter and Humorist, reminding us about the crutch words we need to watch for besides the “ahs and ums” with “so” being a big offender. Carolle’s humorous speech had us all in stitches as she described the symbiotic relationship of cows, crows and the resulting bull. Trevor, doubling as Timer gave us his Thought for the day reminding us of the need to “regenerate” and to remember the power of the sun in our lives versus the negative impact of stress. Grammarian Duncan treated us not only to the word of the day “Re-Create” but provided each member with synonyms and challenged us to use them also in our presentations. What fun!
Table Topics Master Caroline Hanna “re-created” the role by playing music as the basis for each of her questions, playing a tune from her I-Pad and matching the musical question to the demographic of the selected speakers: Duncan, Trevor, Carolle and Susi. Evaluator Nancy Coates commented on her enjoyment of Dunan’s response to a John Travolta Classic, referring to the difference in his own life in 2012 (biking athlete) compared to 1978 when the focus was “how many girls can I pick up”! Trevor spoke of how hearing Bob Marley always puts him in good spirits and reminds him of carefree summers in Osoyoos. Rick evaluated TT speakers Carolle and Susi commenting on Carolle’s cool dance moves from watching Grease 8 times. Susi’s speech began with “Wow do I have a story” which set the stage for her tale of the piece “Save a Horse and Ride a Cowboy”!
Next up after the networking break, Christine Stewart introduced her Toastmaster role with a reminder of the importance of sending Feedback notes which she referred to as a “wonderful gift we can give to others”. Our prepared speakers of the day provided us with fascinating and diverse presentations. Brett Lauritzen shared with us his first trip to Hawaii with wonderful clarity, humour and personal anecdotes that were descriptive and inspiring. Alastair was next up, wearing his Tilley fishing hat. He proceeded to enthral us with a fish tale reminiscent of Moby Dick: huge waves, riptides and life and death struggles! When Alastair disappeared crouching behind the podium below decks, we were right there with him! And yet the tension was relieved by true Alastair understatement when we laughed out loud at his grumble that he was determined to go down lashed to the boat so his family would not have to wait 7 years to collect his insurance! (I don’t recall that Ishmael had that thought but then I don’t think he was an accountant)! Jackie MacLean was next up. After stepping in as a prepared speaker at the very last Minute Jackie presented a very inspirational speech entitled “ Do you Add Value to People’s Lives?” Jackie’s speech was indeed inspirational and a credit to her skill and experience that she was able to deliver such a great speech on short notice. Jackie told us that great leaders add value and “need to love people with genuine compassion”. Three tools that every leader needs are Head , Heart, and Hands working together.
Prepared speech evaluators Caroline, Duncan and Rick offered positive feedback, and tips for improvement leading by example in their demonstration of the qualities of great evaluators.
General Evaluator (yours truly) provided feedback on the meeting and to those participants not yet evaluated. The Winner Ribbons went to Susi for Table Topics, Jackie for Prepared Speeches, Rick for Evaluator and another entertaining and informative meeting ended with the final bang of Carolle’s gavel!