By accident I attended a workshop meeting tonight held by a meetup group ‘Toastmaster’. I’m still confused what exactly is this group about but did have a great time then. The main purpose is to offer people who want to improve their speaking skills the chance and guidance they need. 10-20 people meet together, each give a short speech on arbitrary topics and evaluate each other’s performance.

屏幕快照 2014-10-01 下午10.14.11

I was like a dog sneaking into cats’ get-together but still enjoyed it a lot. For me it’s not like a speaking training class but more of listening to others’s thoughts and experiences. I could just focus on what they talked about rather than how they performed the speech.

There are 3 speaker tonight to give a short speech.First one is Elena Vernigora, a Swedish lady with a likeness of Princess Kate. Her title is ‘Where Buda and Pest meet…’ , and she talked about her experience of a week in Budapest and around. She was planning to spend one-week holiday in Milan for shopping, but by accident she ran into Budapest, a city not that famous for tourism. But instead of complaining and desperation,she had a great time exploring this mysterious city and fell in love with it. That’s her story where Buda and Pest meet, life is like that, full of surprise for you to find out.

The second speaker is Elena Fadeeva, she talks about water–the BLUE GOLD. She put emphasis on the importance of water and worldwide use of it. She points out that water is the base of agriculture and without water there’s not food, no life at all. So shouldn’t we treat water the same way as gold? I think it’s quite old stuff and well-know fact, so didn’t pay much attention.

The last and most amazing speech is given by the president of Toastmaster, Antoinette Olander. She is a passionate and friendly woman. Her title is ‘What Have We Done?’ She enumerates the historical events happened in her generation( the boomers, as she puts it).15 years from high school graduation, some become entrepreneurs and bosses, some are employers and some are employees, some went to Vietnam and some become widows. Some marched with Martin Luther King and some died with the twin building in NY… but all these just make her stronger and give her tools to make it in this world: respect to others, self-discipline and not to be judgmental. In the end, she quoted the lyrics of the famous song ‘Forever Young’ to end the speech and we all felt passionate and confident.

Here is what I want to share with you 🙂


May God bless and keep you always 
May your wishes all come true
May you always do for others 
And let others do for you
May you build a ladder to the stars 
And climb on every rung
May you stay forever young
Forever young, forever young 
May you stay forever young.May you grow up to be righteous 
May you grow up to be true
May you always know the truth 
And see the lights surrounding you
May you always be courageous 
Stand upright and be strong
May you stay forever young
Forever young, forever young 
May you stay forever young.

May your hands always be busy 
May your feet always be swift
May you have a strong foundation 
When the winds of changes shift
May your heart always be joyful 
And may your song always be sung
May you stay forever young
Forever young, forever young 
May you stay forever young.


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About Jiamin Deng

Exchange student of ITM from Tsinghua univ.,China.

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