Easter Traditions [Meeting Report of 2022-04-12]

“Easter is meant to be a symbol of hope, renewal and new life”, Janine de Giovanni, an American journalist and professor, refers to Easter as the time for a new start and celebrating life.

Oliver, the presiding officer for the evening, welcomed our guests, Jon and Mike, who know the club already. Firstly, JP reported about the project of the Competent Leader (CL) manual. He shared with the 12 participants the slides and link how to get credit for taking up roles in Toastmaster meeting. The process starts from now on. Members should decided before the meeting which role they are going to take and ask another member for feedback during the meeting. This can also be tracked in easy speak. The idea is to motivate the new members to take up roles in the meetings to make the meetings more lively, to facilitate the organization of the meetings, and to learn leadership skills by doing so.

The word of the day “halcyon” was given by Sybille who wished everyone halcyon days during the Easter holidays.
Halcyon: characterized by happiness, great success, and prosperity golden —often used to describe an idyllic time in the past that is remembered as better than today

The word was used by Florian and Craig several times.

In his thought of the evening, Jeff focused on Easter as the time of a new beginning like the buds renewing in spring time.  He gave the following quote from Barbara Shur :

You can learn new things at any time in your life if you’re willing to be a beginner. If you actually learn to like being a beginner, the whole world opens up to you.”

Sybille, as toastmaster of the evening, introduced her team taking over various functions, Mike spontaneously took over the role as General Evaluator, Kala was again the timer and Uli signed up as Ah-Counter. To address the theme of the evening Sybille presented some for us unusual Easter traditions, like the giant omelet. This is offered on Easter Monday in the town of Haux in southern France to 1000 people and contains more than 15,000 eggs. It is said the tradition refers to Napoleon and his army.

Our table topics master Jeff presented four questions:

1. What is your favorite Easter memory? Kevin shared with us a lovely story that being home with is family is the best.
2. Tell us one thing you would like to accomplish this spring. Our guest Jon took this question, sharing his wish to start swimming regularly after a long pause do to the pandemic and some health issues.
3. What would be the most amazing thing for you to find in an Easter egg? Uli dreams of finding a new job in her Easter egg and shared with us some of her endeavors so far.
4. What do you appreciate about changing seasons? Kala, originally from India, is used to warm weather but has learned to appreciate the various seasons here. They all have their meaning.

Before the break Sybille informed about the Easter tradition in Poland. On Easter Monday people try to drench each other with buckets of water. Legend says girls who get soaked on Easter Monday will marry within the year.

We had two prepared speeches. In his path presentation mastery, Florian delivered speech five of level 1, evaluation and feedback. He incorporated the feedback of his speech “Doing good better” and repeated the speech focusing on visualization and body language. JP, his evaluator stated a great improvement.

Managing a difficult audience. Craig’s task was to practice the skills needed to address audience challenges and handle interruptions professionally. He delivered a 12 minute speech with the title: Legend.Iconic.Colossal: the Earth Dragon. The speech was excellently presented. Obviously, members found it hard to interrupt this fluent speech. However, Craig reacted professionally to the few interruptions by Uli and Kevin. His speech was evaluated by Ksenja.

Mike rounded off the meeting with his general evaluation. He like the structured meetings and the atmosphere. He praised Oliver for putting the agendas together – as VP Education this is always a very demanding task.

Finally, the performance of the evening was awarded: the best evaluator was Ksenja, the best table topic speaker Uli and the best prepared speech was delivered by Florian.

“Easter us the only time of the year when it is o.k. to put all your eggs in one basket.”

(Thanks to Sybille for this great recap!)


Join us for our next meeting on April 26th.  Till then, best Toastmaster greetings from me,


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