For the second meeting running we had an international visitor, this time with Pawel Brodacki from Warsaw in Poland. We also welcomed a further guest, Clair Martin.
Ellie Zheleva opened the meeting as Sergeant at Arms in a warm, welcoming manner, setting out the usual courtesies before introducing our Toastmaster for the evening, Marie Newman.
Marie in a similar manner kept the friendly mood of the meeting going, welcoming guests and members, before reminding us of the protocols of clapping and shaking hands.
Pawel had accepted the role of Timekeeper and he set out the way the lights would be used in a clear and humorous manner. Simon Roberts was our Grammarian, and explained his role before introducing the word of the evening “mellifluous” meaning sweetly or smoothly flowing.
With everyone suitably informed it fell to Karen Chapman to give the warm-up. With the recent General Election still high in everyone's thoughts she asked what law would those present introduce if in charge of the country. Answers ranged from the sublime to ridiculous with suggestions including, recycling, stiffer control of speeding motorists, and respect to duty free on the Gosport Ferry, obligatory chocolate for breakfast and longer weekends.
After much laughter we sat back in our seats for the prepared speeches, given ably by Ray Adams, Michael John Smithson and Ann Carver. Ray gave his Project 9 speech persuading members about “putting business back into Business Analysis”. Michael John followed with an entertaining speech entitled “Chelsea and Jokes”, and finally spoke on Confidence coaching from the Interpersonal Manual, ably assisted by Sophia Roberts in the role play.
After the voting for best speaker we withdrew to the teas and coffees during our network break.
All too soon Ellie recalled us for the second half when Carolyn Barber, Keith Oliver and Brent Crouch gave their evaluations of the prepared speeches, using the 3-2-1 structure of 3 things I liked, 2 areas for improvement and 1 thing I will take away with me.
The mood changed again as we moved on to table topics, which ray Adams presented. He had brought a selection of books, and asked participants to 'sell' them as if at a book fair. Ellie had “Life Goes On” about setting goals, Keith had “Home Grown Teas” abut growing tea at home, Karen was given “Further along the Road less travelled” about taking different paths, Ann had “Sink, Float, Swim” about choices in life, Clair grappled with “A Course in Miracles”, while Sophia tried to explain “Trances People Live”. Finally Simon Roberts had “Sex” which he sought to assure us was not his.
It was now time for Simon's grammarian report, and he congratulated those present for using the word of the evening and highlighted the number of ums and ers used, before picking out some of the fine words and phrases had resonated with him during the evening..
Michael John having composed his thoughts took on t he role of Table Topics Evaluator reminding of the manner in which people dealt with their subjects and picking up on certain good examples.
Pawel was asked to give the General Evaluation and he found much which pleased him with the club, and had gained ideas to take back to his own club. He had however found the noise made switching on the lights distracting.
Keith Oliver was next invited tot he lectern for club business. First he presented Pawel wih the customary Spinnaker fridge magnet as a memento of his visit. He then reminded members that as the date of the next meeting fell on the Bank Holiday our next Toastmaster evening would be on 8 June.
Michael John handed out the awards and invited or guests to say how they found the meeting, before closing the evening.
Best Speaker – Ann Carver
Best Evaluator – Simon Roberts
Best Table Topics – Simon Roberts