The Toastmasters Division B Fall Contests were this morning at the Holiday Inn near my house. And since that wasn't even 2 miles away, I was able to sleep in a bit then be there in no time. Anyways, the contest was well-run, the food was really good, and the winners were deserving.
Being my home Division, there were a lot of familiar faces -- which was very welcoming. Seeing who I was to be a timer with, I knew that the contest was going to be a lot of fun.
Then I knew this was going to be more true when everyone at our table started attacking our desserts rightaway... even before the contest had officially started! Ha! I needed coffee.
Anyways, first up was the Evaluation contest. The test speaker spoke of "The Tools That Trip Us Up" -- in particular, the wedge of self-doubt; then he gave us some tips for improving ourselves, which were 1) to read positive material, 2) to surround ourselves with positive people, and 3) to K.N.I.T... i.e., to be sure that what we say is Kind, Necessary, Important, and True. It's difficult to evaluate the evaluators, but none were overly praising or harsh -- they all got the job done.
After the Evaluation contest was lunch. FOOD! But first, one of the Toastmasters and friend performed a Thai dance as entertainment:
It was very nice and reminded me of Fiesta Night back home.
Okay, back to the FOOD!
We had a choice of either Beef, Chicken, or Vegetarian dish. I took a picture of the food I saw (hence no pictures of the vegetarian option) plus my COFFEE and a slice of chocolate cake that somehow survived the first round of ravishing.
After Humorous Speech and before the winners of both contests were announce, there was the RAFFLE. I borrowed money to get tickets because I wanted the Toastmasters tote bag, but as luck would have it, the higher-level the contest, the more competitive the raffling was, and I didn't win the bag:
But my fellow timer did! And she very graciously gave it to me to the "Awwws" of the crowd. Thank you Gloria!
As for the contest awards, as I mentioned before, all of the winners were deserving, and there were no big surprises. In fact, I went three for three with my picks for the Humorous Speech contest. I had forgot to take pictures of all the awards either before the event started, during lunch, or during intermission, so I went to hunt down some of the winners.
(... now THIS is MOM)
I had a great time today and am looking forward to the Fall Conference -- to all the speakers and seminars, to the familiar faces, and to the trouble and mayhem this wild bunch is sure to get into!