Six guest, five prepared speeches and 5 impromptu speeches made for an exciting and full programme on Monday evening, 11th March.

We learned from Vero Ardes that poor communication is the cause of relationships breaking down, both in the workplace and at home. This speech fulfilled the requirements of her second project, which is concerned with the structure of a speech.

Chantal Weisshaupt, also completing her second Toastmasters speaking project, very descriptively told us how music can restore one after the “noise” of a busy day.

Judith Taylor described in wonderful word pictures, vocal intonation and gesture an opera project in which she’d been involved in her youth. The carefully created costumes turned out to be barely suitable for the venue where the performance was staged and only luck prevented the very serious production unraveling into a farcical comedy.

John-Peter Gernaat presented a lifetime award for benefits to humanity to Dr Madan Kataria, founder of Laughter Yoga, for the lives that have been saved and the many other benefits of prolonged voluntary laughter.

Finally Rod Taylor entertained us with visual deceptions in a speech that explained how poorly we can or should rely on our sight for determining truth or reality. See for yourself: in this picture the coke bottle is a chalk drawing of the same surface on which the artist is haunched, but will your eyes accept this?

The impromptu speeches run by Sriram Murali required the speakers to regale the audience with their special connection with a season of the year, drawn at random. We heard about the beauty of spring, snow and a white Christmas in Europe experienced as a child from Africa, filming a tropical cyclone in summer, killing a huge black mamba in autumn and the lazy, hazy days of summer.

Toastmaster of the evening, Keith Bowen, provided the continuity of the evening using the theme of the evening "Harvest" to share a diversity of quotes on the subject.

The evening was social - commented on by our guests, entertaining and educational. We welcome guests and hope to see you at one of our club meetings soon.