Page 1




Time is flowing like a river. It waits for no one - never has and never will! It's been over a month that we're in a nationwide lockdown and things have never been the same! As I write this editor's note, I ponder if it ever crossed my mind that we could be fighting a pandemic war? No, my mind promptly replies. And so like everyone else I am grappling the unknown waters alone trying to navigate through these dark times - one day at a time. But everything has two sides, and I choose to focus on the positive. Coming to the newsletter, wow we were overwhelmed by the sheer number of entries received. We thank every contributor who wrote to us and inspired us with their story! You all are the shining stars of this newsletter as without your support and cooperation we wouldn't have come this far! In this momentous 10th edition of the newsletter, we bring to you personal stories of members across District 98 and how they are spending their time this lockdown! For our cover story, we contemplate the days following leading up to the Corona crisis and how Toastmasters have adjusted. We yet again have a new Trivia, and the winner of our last Trivia declared! Flip through the pages, and we assure you there'll be a smile on your face. If you have any suggestions or letters to the editor, please feel free to write to us at editor@district98.org. Until then, stay home and stay safe!

Haleemunnisa Fatima

District Newsletter Editor


Tanya Arora Content Curator

They say, ‘an apple a day keeps the doctor away,’ but there is one doctor we wouldn’t want to keep away from our team. Tanya Arora is that doctor! The first time I spoke to her, I remember it was raining and she was out driving, we couldn’t connect and she called back later and I wondered, ‘am I making the right decision?’ medical studies coupled with Toastmasters seemed tough to me but here we are 10 months on and Tanya has continued to defy all my notions about doctors and Toastmasters. She is dedicated, hard-working (did you know she once transcribed and translated an interview in Hindi to English? Well, now you know!). And as mentioned earlier, apart from Toastmasters she is a medical student!



Dear fellow members, The New Normal is now the Normal! And the best thing to do when taken by surprise is to take it in one’s stride and face it! We are nearing 2 months since the lockdown began for good! Toastmasters were quick enough to take this change in their stride and deliver even better. The month of April saw complete adoption of the virtual space for online meetings and contests by most of the clubs. At a District level we organised two events for holistic experience of our members:              1. We hosted a Historic joint meeting between D98 and D41 which saw the International President, Deepak Menon, DTM join us. 2. We also hosted a Roundtable with champions of public speaking Mohammed Qahtani, DTM (Winner, WCPS 2015) and Aditya Maheswaran, DTM (1st Runners up, WCPS 2015).   It is heartening to see clubs come up with innovative meetings and making the best of these times. I am sure you have seen #D98QuarantineDiaries on our Facebook group. If you have a story which you want to share about your new hobby or you donning the hat of a chef, a musician, a gardener or something new, please feel free to share with us at dprmd98@gmail.com I congratulate Fatima and team for being so meticulous in ensuring the release of each publication of Communicate 98!  Cheers to this 10th One.   And as I sign off, please take care of yourself and your loved ones!

Ravi Sharma District Public Relations Manager



Venkata Ramana Dittakavi Mukta Nadkar Dipankar Das Aaron Colaco Revathi Mocherla Ravi Sharma Ravi Teja Marrapu Jasvindersingh Bhatti Avaanticka Narayan Harshad Khiera Amandeep Singh Harshita Lalchand Satish Reddy Eadala Divesh Tiwari Joy B Hans Mythili Sarathy Vinay Kumar Srivastava Akhil Pillai Himanshu Inamdar Khushboo Kanodia Deval Patel Aviral Patle Jyotendra Sharma Tapas Saha Saikumar Iyer Neha Warrier Shekhar Khobrekar Sanjan Shetty Ranjini Rao Ankit Pachauri Ravi Asher Sanjay R Vishnu Medikonda Sandesh Banger Sakshi Srivastava Suneel Potdar Satish Poondla Shweta Saraf Sushil Pawar Manideep Raja Shekhar Satyaram Sandeep Raj Madasu Sanjona Jonnavithula Adnan Ali Uday Kiran Sodima Annish Mohapatra Jayasree Karthik N S Saisudhan Sutrave

District Director Program Quality Director Club Growth Director District Administration Manager District Finance Manager District Public Relations Manager Immediate Past District Director Division Director A Division Director B Division Director C Division Director D Division Director E Division Director F Division Director G Division Director H Division Director J Division Director M Division Director O Division Director P Area Director A1 Area Director A2 Area Director A3 Area Director A4 Area Director B1 Area Director B2 Area Director B3 Area Director B4 Area Director B5 Area Director B6 Area Director C1 Area Director C2 Area Director C3 Area Director C4 Area Director C5 Area Director D1 Area Director D2 Area Director D3 Area Director D4 Area Director D5 Area Director E1 Area Director E2 Area Director E3 Area Director E4 Area Director E5 Area Director F1 Area Director F2 Area Director F3 Area Director F4

Annem Yasaswini Sainadh Gupta Vineela Padmaja Balla Gautam Ayyalasomayajula Siddharth Vedulla Surekha Thandra Devika Padam Animesh Mahapatra Chaitanya V Eshant Gupta Manav Makhija Mrunal Hatwar Akashdeep Agarwal Vaishalee Sheth Mavani Deepa Rajendra Shetty Santosh Akella Ajay Kumar Syona Fernandes Clyde Tellis Utkarsh Ajay Shah Vasudha Lal Nabanita Das Suhas Ananthanarayanan Ramya Kesharwani Vikram Sikka Pramod P B Neil Doshi Sagar Pawar Dhaval Vyas Jayeshkumar Pindoriya Chandrashekar D P Vijay Kalke Pavan Teja Basva Smita Mishra Mayuri Assudani G. K. Aajay Shireesh Nadkar, DTM Mayank Naidu Ankit Dasgupta Shubhangi Pandey Mario Rozario Avinash Kumar Sharma Ramakanth Konatham Usha Udayshankar Bharat Shah Haleemunnisa Fatima Basudhara Choudhuri Ron Billimoria

Area Director F5 Area Director G1 Area Director G2 Area Director G3 Area Director G4 Area Director G5 Area Director H1 Area Director H2 Area Director H3 Area Director H4 Area Director H5 Area Director J1 Area Director J2 Area Director J3 Area Director M1 Area Director M2 Area Director M3 Area Director M4 Area Director M5 Area Director M6 Area Director O1 Area Director O2 Area Director O3 Area Director O4 Area Director O5 Area Director P1 Area Director P2 Area Director P3 Area Director P4 Area Director P5 District Parliamentarian District Credentials Chair District Logistics Manager District Training Manager District Chief Judge District 98 Pathways Chair DCP & Awards Chair District Marketing Manager Club Extension Chair - Community Club Extension Chair - Corporate Club Extension Chair - New Initiatives Club Coach Manager Club Coach Manager Club Coach Manager District Audit Committee Chair District Newsletter Editor District Communications Chair District Webmaster





HIGHLIGHTS OF THE MONTH District 98 & District 41, Joint Virtual Meeting held on the 5th of April


1. Deepak Menon, DTM, International President, Toastmasters International

Round Table with World Champions - Aditya Maheswaran, DTM and Mohammed Qhatani, DTM held on 12th of April

2 2. Aditya Maheswaran, DTM

3 3. Mohammed Qhatani, DTM




Virtual - The New Normal

There are many sayings which we have read since our childhood. As a student, I sometimes used to feel HALEEMUNNISA these sayings are very abstract, one of those was ‘change is inevitable.’ However, for the first time in FATIMA my life, I feel that I’m living a saying. The last two months have made almost all of us believe that anything is possible under the sun. Change has indeed been inevitable! But hey, how has your change been? Have you been changing for good? Or have you been worrisome? Well at Toastmasters, we have embraced change in a positive stride! Can you remember the initial days of March, when we in India were still largely unaffected by the virus? Work was being carried out normally and so our Toastmasters meeting (think corporate and college clubs). And then suddenly things quite literally changed overnight! What was a precautionary measure of Work From Home being taken by some companies, was suddenly mandatory for all! Where did that leave us and our meetings? The idea to move online almost seemed alien. After all, how would we give a speech in front of a tiny screen with no real-time audience feel? But what choice did we have apart from either letting go of Toastmasters completely or adjusting to this new normal, only one! And so, we evolved! We evolved by having our first-ever Toastmasters online meeting on Zoom on shaky grounds to finally mastering online meetings. Not only did we conduct online meetings, but we also went on to conduct Club contests, followed by Area, Division contests and upcoming District contests and elections. While clubs had meetings over zoom, from a District level we made the best use of technology to have our first-ever joint meeting between District 98 and District 41 which was graced by the International President, Deepak Menon, DTM. Another cherry on the cake was a roundtable with the champions of Public Speaking, Mohammed Qahtani, DTM (WCPS 2015) and Aditya Maheswaran, DTM (1st Runners up WCPS 2015). Both events saw a turnout of 220+ members from across the world. Quite spectacular, if you were to ask me!




Virtual - The New Normal Our audience is still the same, just far away with few more familial additions yet near, and across the screen. The laughs are the same, the emotions, enthusiasm and cheering too. Yet, the biggest advantage of all was and is a chance to attend club meetings across the globe and interact with members all over! Isn’t that what some of us always wanted to do? I know one person who has thoroughly loved this, and that is none other than I. This global pandemic has truly changed us and the way we interact with the world, including our Toastmasters experience. For although we’re socially distanced, we are still very much connected through messages, video and audio calls. Therefore it becomes important, for us all to push ourselves and our boundaries and find newer ways to adapt in Toastmasters, as well as, personal and professional lives. I am sure this is the toughest times many of us would be going through. Bizarre number of working hours coupled with household chores and yes, our Toastmasters meetings. All we need to do is stay strong because this too shall pass!

Edited and compiled by Fatima




Through a Child’s Eye Many months before the lockdown, I used to imagine if it was possible to run away from the office to stay at a remote place for a couple of months to refresh myself. My wife and I live in different cities because of our jobs. During the initial weeks of March, I went to Bageshwar where she works as a school teacher. Thanks to the ‘Work From Home’ Policy.

KESHAV SHARMA Wakad Toastmasters Club

However, when the time came to travel back to Pune, the lockdown was announced and it came in as a blessing in disguise for both of us with mixed feelings. On one hand, we were happy that we will be getting more time, maybe a couple of months, to spend together and on the other hand, we were also worried about how our nation would recover from this pandemic. While pondering upon this situation, I realized that there are two important lessons for me to learn:

When you long for something from the depths of your heart, it happens. It might take some time but it happens for sure You need to have a strong mindset to deal with challenges in life. Considering the situation we all are in, this not only requires good health but also strong will power This quarantine has also taught each of us to spend some time with our own self. If we recall our life before this lockdown, it used to be very busy due to work or going out with family and friends. We rarely talked to our own self. We almost never realized that the most important person sitting within also needs our attention.




People who are aware of it, are the ones feeling less frustrated during this time. But people, who have never looked within, are the ones feeling lonely and scared. I am sure, by the time we come out of this situation, each one of us will have explored something good about ourselves, be it their hobbies, interests, passion, childhood memories, new skills, strong bonding with family and friends and a new evolved self. And, I would like to conclude by saying that nature has given us an opportunity to be grateful for the things which we take for granted. So, let’s be more aware of ourselves, about the people we interact with and about this planet in which we live, otherwise, there is no meaning of this beautiful gift-of-life we have.

Edited and compiled by Vaibhav



LEARNINGS Learnings From My Public Speaking Journey It is said - the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. So true. When I joined Mahindra Worli Toastmasters Club in September last year, I took that first step in my public speaking journey. From then to now, I would say I have grown and how!

SHERNAZ KAPADIA Mahindra Worli Toastmasters

I still remember the day I gave my first ever speech - the Ice Breaker. I was anxious, and a tad nervous, of facing an audience. What if I forgot my lines? What if I went on stage and drew a straight blank? There were so many questions going on in my head. But my fears were unfounded. Because, to my pleasant surprise, the audience was encouraging, supportive and they motivated me to give my best.

Toastmasters is filled with positivity and comradery. Each one builds the other one up.  There is a sense of excelling, but only excelling your own last performance. Practice makes perfect. Though I am not perfect, I have embarked on the journey towards excellence. To do better at Table Topics,  I decided to read up - on notes, quotes, anecdotes. I also started going through TEDx videos and videos of Toastmasters’ winning speeches, and extempore talks. Not only did I find them inspiring, but I also got some good tips on voice modulations, body language and storytelling. By taking up various roles -  such as Table Topics master, Evaluator and Grammarian, I learnt how to conduct the session, and develop my leadership skills, bit by bit. Of course, there is still a long way to go. I believe our club meetings are great networking sessions.  The people i.e. members, guests, keynote speakers are all full of positivity.  Their stories are uplifting making our sessions full of learning and fun. Another important learning for me is that for Table Topics speeches, we need to think quickly, on our feet. There is no preparation time.  In a sense, this has helped me in searching and structuring my thoughts, and planning the flow of my speech and then delivering the speech; all in a matter of one to two minutes. Moreover, by listening to my fellow speakers, I get new inputs and try to keep them in my repository. So, in a nutshell,  as Michelangelo said at the age of 87, ‘I am still learning’, this beautiful journey I have embarked upon is filled with learnings, and yes, ‘I too am still learning.’


Edited and compiled by Fatima



A Page from My Diary

Quarantine means a state, period or place of isolation in which people or animals that have arrived from elsewhere or have been exposed to the infectious or contagious disease are placed. It is an Italian word, ‘Quaranta’ means forty.

PRACHI MISHRA RG Speakers Toastmasters Club

This word exists in the dictionary but I came to know only a few days back when after returning from my brother’s place in Rajasthan our HRBP requested me to move to Hotel for quarantine. It was a great shock. All best facilities existed but emotionally completely shattered. This state of mind ended within two ME days. Got company there, made new same category friends and shared feelings. To vent off all frustration, regular workout, TV, reading, photography, our car polishing (which was rarely done) and discussions were the only options. The time flew as there was no space for grief, slowly we adapted to the situation. We did not give up but did our best to remain happy and smiling in all the exams even if sad from within and justified the saying.

“It is not the strongest or the most intelligent who survive but, those who can best manage change.” – Charles Darwin We audited the hotel and gave many punch points to them as Reliance is deep-rooted in our blood now. Days ended, clearing medical checkup after 14 days was equivalent to completing a big project, finally reached home. As we were released from one place our government announced a “Lockdown“ of 21 days. At least this is better than hotel quarantine. I started exploring hidden desires. Due to the lockdown, it was good that Work From Home started which took most of the time and made us communicate with colleagues. Maids were not allowed to enter the township, gates sealed except for office employees, all roads barred, no gathering and social distancing to be followed strictly.




A Page from My Diary I used to go out for grocery only once a week and that too during odd hours. My garden used to get the least priority during office days so now all plants were merry being pampered. Results were amazing: bitter gourd gave birth to young ones, bottle gourd rose high on the tree, flowers blossomed, chillies were playing on the plant and plants multiplied. Many new planters were made from available waste material to accommodate new ones. Creativity was at its peak which resulted in honeybee, hill and many decorative planters. Adding another string to the bow I also learnt a few new dishes and upcoming concept of micro-farming so that we can grow highly nutritious plants in limited resources. Sitting in the balcony and viewing the garden demanded more items: a coffee table and la amp so they came along with a shelter for birds, why should they be left? As somehow the end date arrived, Corona cases rose and lockdown extended for 18 more days which are crawling on still. Don’t know what will happen next. “None can destroy iron but its own rust can! Likewise, no one can destroy a person but its own mindset can.” – Ratan Tata

Learning under the leadership of such great leaders all Indians as One Team fighting with this pandemic. It has me taught many lessons: Explore yourself, unlock hidden potentials, one can only take care of themselves no one else, Work from home started in many companies for the first time, one can remain indoors with limited resources, etc. No one knows about the future and it is unpredictable, all planning goes in vain. Toastmasters have risen by leaps and bound with online Zoom meetings and gave the opportunity to widen the prospects proving. NO MATTER WHAT COMES BUT THE SHOW MUST GO ON!

Edited and compiled by Tanya




Bonding Beyond Boundaries Benjamin Franklin said, “Out of adversity comes opportunity.” 12th March 2020, Thane, India. I was gearing up for the contest season with all the excitement. All of a sudden, I got a call from one of the Club President, “Santosh, our corporate has cancelled all internal and external gatherings in the wake of COVID-19. We cannot hold our meetings any longer.” This was followed by similar calls and WhatsApp messages for the next two days. I wondered as if my Toastmasters journey had come to a sudden halt?

SANTOSH AKELLA Agnel Toastmasters Club

15th March 2020, Thane, India. I witnessed the International Speech Contest of TCS Maitree Toastmasters Club, Mumbai. Moreover, the contest was attended by over 45+ audience member. How was that possible? Aren’t public gatherings not allowed anymore? Well, they conducted an Online Contest so that everyone can watch from the comfort of their homes. Subsequently, work from home/watch from home/stay home became the norm with the nationwide lockdown amidst the rising threat of the pandemic. But was this the end of my Toastmasters journey? No, we Toastmasters are in sync with changing times and soon our meetings were online instead of offline. And thus began my journey of attending various online club meetings and contests. There are some I have attended along with a few other Toastmasters from District 98. To name a few: Mastermind Toastmasters Club, Bangladesh Thung Chung Toastmasters Club, Hong Kong Cornerstone Communicators Advanced Toastmasters Club, United Kingdom American Muslim Orators Toastmasters Club CA Toastmasters Club Lahore, Pakistan Yes, my Toastmasters journey, the fun, the excitement and the learnings are still going on. What is amazing is that instead of closing most clubs in Toastmasters across the globe have started adopting this NEW NORMAL.



INTER-TOASTMASTERS TOGETHERNESS Bonding Beyond Boundaries I believe, we as a community of Toastmasters have crossed this speed breaker, converted it into a virtual bridge to connect with each other. We are beating the solitude of quarantine with Online Toastmasters Meetings – exploring other cultures by joining worldwide meetings, this is a chance that we CA Toastmasters Club Lahore, Pakistan need to take, this is not adversity, but is indeed an opportunity for us to experience online meetings. We are beating the solitude of quarantine with Online Toastmasters Meetings – exploring other cultures by joining worldwide meetings, this is a chance that we need to take, this is not adversity, but is indeed an opportunity for us to experience online meetings. If not yet, then why wait? It’s time to explore ourselves and take action to continue the Toastmasters journey. It’s time to connect with the world of Online Toastmasters during this disconnect and bond beyond boundaries.

Online Meeting of: American Muslim Orators Toastmasters Club

Edited and compiled by Fatima




QUARANTINE WATCHLIST We’re sure you all have found something innovative this quarantine season and we may be the last people to suggest how to invest your time this quarantine time! However, we just couldn’t help ourselves when we stumbled upon these amazing YouTube channels and we just had to share! So, here is a list of some YouTube channels that we believe can cheer you up during Quarantine times and infuse positive vibes in you. *Visit the channel by clicking on the image or name of the channel!



WILD TURMERIC (Personal Care)




BOOKLET (Book Reviews)

GARDEN UP (Balcony Garden)



TIFFIN BOX (Quick Recipes)





TRIVIA This term came from the French l'humour noire and was coined by Andre Q1. Breton around 1940. This phrase was first used in English in 1965. Famous author Jonathon Swift made this kind of writing more popular in his book named " A Modest Proposal", published in 1729. Name this term? This Indian woman actor & film director made a unique record in the Indian Film industry when she won the national award for best direction twice & Q2. became the only woman film director to achieve it so far. Who is this famous woman director? Famous singer John Lennon signed his last autograph on a music album just a few hours before he was shot. He had given his autograph to his Q3. murderer Mark Chapman who was upset by his public comments & fired 5 deadly shots. Name the famous last album? Mons Huygens is the tallest mountain of this astronomical body which is 5.5 km. in height & named after a Dutch astronomer Christian Huygens who Q4. first measured it. Name the astronomical body? The first graduating class of Cornell University Medical school had 12 women out of 67 Degree recipients. The Woman who got the highest marks came to India & laid the foundation of one of India's most famous Medical Q5. institution which was started functioning in the year 1900 as a one-bed clinic? Name the woman & the Medical institution?

Send in your solved trivia to editor@district98.org

Trivia created by: Arnab Ghosal Secunderabad Toastmasters Area G3


Last day to send your answers is 20th May 11:59 PM. Winner will be declared in the next newsletter! #FastestFingerFirst



Through a Child’s Eye Exams are over, and the countdown for the much-awaited vacation begins, tickets booked, bags packed and the excitement is at its peak! But suddenly out of the blue, mother nature decides to take a break and the world comes to a standstill.

FORUM TALATI RG Orators Toastmasters Club

The daily routine takes a 360-degree turn. Between the household chores to work from home, between PS5 to board games. It’s never an easy task to manage the little angels 24*7. I am sure all mummies out there were in the same dilemma, But guess how Toastmasters came to the rescue? While preparing for my speech, my little angel entered the room and inquired about my next role for the Toastmaster’s online meeting “Evaluator, Speech, TAG, General evaluator or TTM which role are you playing, Mamma?” I was amazed by his curiosity and passion. So I proposed an idea in our club which happens to be a club of only women members blessed with motherhood, about starting a 'Ginie Minie' group for our kids. The proposal was welcomed by our club members and with our VP Education’s efforts we created a pathway for them, “Spreading Happiness”. It comprises of 3 levels and 2 projects in each. Ginie -Minie Club Pathway: Spreading Happiness This pathway like the original has 3 levels viz. Level 1 Level 2 Level 3




Through a Child’s Eye Level 1: Project 1: My Thoughts Project 2: My Recitation Level 2: Project 1: My Inspiration Project 2: My Friendship story Level 3: Project 1: My Science Project Project 2: My Record Book Pathway Complete!

The only rule in the group is that there are no rules to be expressive. The group is by the Ginie Minies and for the Ginie Minies. They take up the roles and justify the same to its core, of course under the mentorship of the best mentor under the sun, their mothers who are none other than the members of RG Orators Toastmasters Club. The group members belong to the age group of 6 to 12, but the enthusiasm speaks in volumes, be it a speech or a timers role every role, is taken and done diligently. The timers give an account of milliseconds as well. The Ginie Minie propose the meeting once a week and await for the D-day. The theme of the day is so creative and is executed innovatively too. It is said that life always unfolds mysteries, accept it with open arms. Thanks to the development of the technology that has come to our recuse during this learning period. It is a boon for adults and kids to sail through the difficult times. Stay Home and Stay Safe. Edited and compiled by Aseema




A Day From My Diary Tuesday, April 14, 2020 It’s almost a month since lockdown was declared in Mumbai and today was market day for us. Normally, only one person is allowed to go to the market and that too in your vicinity, but we have special permission to go to Khar market, thanks to what happened on 2nd April.



It was the 2nd of April, we were getting used to the Toastmasters Club lockdown. That day, my wife Anju woke me at 7:30 A.M. with tea and biscuits on a tray. I knew something was brewing. As soon as I put down the cup, she told me to drive her to the market to buy groceries and fish. I reminded her in vain about the ban on two people going to buy things. We left home around 8:15 in the morning. At the first corner, just outside Juhu Garden, we were stopped by three policemen. But just as they began to question us, an elderly gentleman passing by on a bicycle, lost his balance and fell. He must have been in his late 80’s. Two of the three policemen rushed to help him. I too got out to help, but the third policeman stopped me. I watched as the two cops tried to steady the old man, but he kept falling. Anju, who knows about such stuff, called out to them and told them that he needed sugar and then she opened the glove compartment of the car and took out a packet of Parle glucose biscuits which I didn’t even know was there. The third cop standing near me rushed it to the old man. After eating three biscuits, the elderly gentleman sat up on the road, looked around and slowly stood up with the helping hands of the two policemen near him. He told them that he lived nearby with his bedridden wife and his two sons lived abroad. They had no help since the lockdown began and he cooked whatever he could for both. He was diabetic and was on his way to buy groceries when he fell. Anju called out to the policemen and told them to take his name and address, and she would be happy to buy whatever the elderly couple needed during the lockdown. The old man looked grateful and relieved and insisted that he would pay for everything. The three policemen exchanged brief glances and agreed happily. She handed three more packets of biscuits to the policemen before they let us pass. Anju has kept her promise so far, and once every four days, we both carry vegetables, foodstuff and medicines to seven senior citizens in Santacruz West. She also carries some homemade snacks, and they look forward to our visit. The policemen along the way know us by now, and they too get a small treat. In this gloom of the current Pandemic, we both feel a warm glow of satisfaction and fulfilment. And we Thank God for giving us an opportunity to help in our small way. Edited and compiled by Sakshi




Let’s Do an Activity 21 days of lockdown and we all were looking for activities to kill time. Well, it was definitely not an issue at Kharadi Toastmasters Club. We came up with an activity a day for 21 days, under the concept KTC_Cares. Day Day Day Day Day Day Day Day Day Day Day Day Day Day Day Day Day Day Day Day Day

JOE Kharadi Toastmasters Club

1: Name Game (WhatsApp) 2: Guess the member - Part 1 (WhatsApp) 3: Word Game - Part 1 (WhatsApp) 4: Club Meeting (Virtual) 5: KTC Musical Eve (Virtual) 6: Am grateful for (WhatsApp) 7: TM Kanchan’s Kitchen Korner – Cooking Show (Virtual) 8: April fool fun activity (WhatsApp) 9: Guess the member – Part 2 (WhatsApp) 10: Word Game – Part 2 (WhatsApp) 11: Club Meeting (Virtual) 12: Once upon a time by TM Basudhara – Story Telling (Virtual) 13: Name Food Activity (WhatsApp) 14: Number Game (WhatsApp) 15: Book Review by TM Aanchal (Virtual) 16: Guess the Member – Part 3 (WhatsApp) 17: Selfie Friday (WhatsApp) 18: Club Meeting (Virtual) 19: KTC Comedy Night – Sit Down Comedy (Virtual) 20: Walk the Walk (8000 steps indoor walking challenge) 21: Meet & Eat – Dinner Party (Virtual)

It was a wonderful platform for members to showcase their talents other than speaking. These activities kept us connected, encouraged members to turn up for club meetings, more bonding, fun and fellowship. Being there for each other during difficult times! Edited and compiled by Vaibhav




Stay Muted "Habits change into character." Publius Ovidius Naso Ovid My habit is to speak, express anytime and anywhere, no matter whether my view matters or not. I like to share my ideas, points, or even likes or dislikes to a person or team.


As we all are passing through melancholic days, things are changing drastically. Those who are starving for over a week are desperate to for work, humans are inside, and animals are outside, humans are bored while nature is healing. Most scenes are worst, but at the same time, few things are favourable.

RG Orators Toastmasters

These days most of our work is being done online, right from a child's schooling to a Toastmasters meeting. The biggest learning from this quarantine period for me is to stay muted. Well, I have attended many Toastmasters meetings, family meetings, seeing my child attend an online school or tuition class and more. One thing I noticed most of the time is that we are staying mute in online meetings. A new rule added to the Toastmasters Seargent-At-Arms list is to ask everyone to stay muted and turn off the video unless their turn comes to speak. Despite staying mute or invisible, you can learn and enjoy many things. If you want to stop debate or any harsh discussion you can stay mute. If you want to have peace of mind, then stay mute most of the time. But it doesn't mean you are not allowed to express your views, or ideas or opinions this all can be done but at a certain time or whenever you are being asked, and I realized that our words carry more value when we speak when asked. Even in our personal lives, being available always is not advisable. Quarantine gifted me a few more learnings: Frequent market visits can be avoided. Some domestic work used to be a headache, but now it's easy We don’t need to hoard stuff we can live with a lot less Some me time is necessary during the day. I started watching web series during this time of quarantine With little effort and time management, I can manage all types of work efficiently from cooking to cleaning and teaching to watching favourite web series These are my learnings from this quarantine, and I hope we all must have learned many things. Stay safe stay beautiful. Edited and compiled by Fatima






Beena Mandrekar, member of Aundh Toastmasters Club attended the online meeting of Moody’s London Toastmasters Club, Division K, District 91

Get your Picture Featured Here: Save a group picture of the visiting club when you attend a virtual meeting in a different District. Submit your screenshots for a chance to be featured in the newsletter. Send your pictures to editor@district98.org. Happy Toastmastering!




Introspecting in the Time of Lockdown It is always said, learning has no age limit or boundaries as it can happen at any point in time, but this time it is different. Yes, it’s a well-known challenge the whole world is facing, adversity in the form of COVID-19 where all our usual activities are on hold and unnecessary movements are restricted.

PRIYA RANI RG Orators Toastmasters Club

So, when we are not doing what we are supposed to do, what are we actually doing? Some are trying their hands on painting, cooking, spending quality time with family. While some have found the hidden artist in themselves. It feels as if this quarantine is a blessing in disguise where everyone is actually living and doing what their heart feels right.  Similar is the case for me as I started with, watching the long-pending classic movies rusting in my desktop folder for years. This pandemic gave me the realization that how we are so unappreciative of the beautiful life given to us and rather than living it we are just surviving each passing day. So, I started with the smallest thing first, keeping my room clean and tidy. Called up the friends who were once everything and shouted at them that why they didn’t call me first!  Since I had a long time to think, ponder and introspect, I realized how we get ourselves engaged in such trivial things that we undermine the quintessential self. So, I have categorized my time into important and urgent but family is the priority. I also finished the half-read novel which I had bought last year because anyways that’s an expensive one so I had to! Well, I feel this quarantine gave me a mixed response along with a nostalgic feeling of good memories. But ultimately it completely relies on an individual as to how they take it. Because if, this quarantine period brings nothing better out of you, you are not lacking time but discipline. Edited and compiled by Sakshi




Margao Toastmasters Club

Andheri Orators Toastmasters

RAY CYRUS GOMES DO YOU DARE Don't you dare open your mouth, Don't you dare speak your heart Your expressions aren't worthy Your feelings aren't really sturdy.

EDREANA VAZ THE BROKEN WINDOW Inside four walls of a room with no door Lived two men with one broken window The window never to entirely open Never to entirely close Such they lived until one rebelled As alike in physique as they were Poles apart were their thoughts While one saw the broken window as doom The other never failed to be less grateful towards it Having the same resources at their disposal One quivered in the cold cursing the old window While the other broke off the window frame that wouldn’t close And lit up a fire, blissfully resting in its warmth Few miles away stood a tree Watching these two as they lay in sleep One in cold and one in warmth For its not in fate to receive what you get But what you do to receive a good fate Come summer The scorching heat melted the window rod Escaped the grateful man to seek shade under the tree While the other didn’t flinch at the thought of staying back Believing it was his destiny

Don't you dare run, Don't you dare hide Don't you dare show me your might You can't fly like an eagle in the sky. You are weak, you can't learn. Don't hope, in expectations, you'll burn Don't try, you’re useless runaway and cry Don't you stutter, don't you speak You're just another freak Don't you dare be you, Don't you dare try Because there are millions who want you out of their sight They want to you gone They want you to fail.. Because you are special and you will make a name. Jealous are they They can't see you fly That's coz when an eagle flies No one talks about crows in the sky. You're unique. Don't be afraid Stand up and face the stage Let this whole world know your name I promise, be true to your self, and it will lead you far You will shine brighter than, the brightest star.

“Oh how foolish are men” exclaimed the tree To believe in ‘it will be what’s meant to be’ Only if they knew trees don’t grow naturally We scour the earth for water and rise to find sunlight So that we can be what we want to be.




Work From Home Work From Home, in the past, generally, this was a buzzword of IT employees but in today’s current situation, every business has to opt for “Work From Home” strategy. Being from an Industrial Project background, I am experiencing this for the first time. Let me share my experiences. The first point is being in touch with our friends and colleagues mainly through video calls because social distancing is the need of the hour.


From my observation and study, I learnt that we should use our company’s VPN to avail fool-proof data security. I also notice that some of us have become so social online, that they forget that they are working from home. Knowingly or unknowingly, they are sharing their photos with their laptop/computer on social media with the tagline  “Dude, I am working from home”. I would like to suggest one thing; never forget to lock the computer even if you are stepping away for just a minute, especially if you have children around. Last week my friend Nirav just left the desk to attend a  nature's call. Unfortunately, the computer and mailbox were ‘ON’. After returning, he saw one mail-in his sent folder addressed to his boss with an attachment of personal photographs. It put him in an embarrassing situation. Take care, please. Another time, when I was chatting to my neighbour, I noticed a blazer though he was in shorts. I asked him, “Aakash, why the Blazer?” “Oh Rishi, I have a video meeting with my boss shortly.” Whenever I visualize him wearing a blazer over the shorts, I can’t stop laughing. Let me take you to the experience of female colleagues. One of them was complaining about her four-year-old child wanting to have a chat with her boss and started crying. She further added that the child was tired of just watching TV, playing games on video or seeing only family member's faces. This situation reminds me of a saying by Samuel Goldwyn, “I don’t want any yes-men around me. I want everyone to tell me the truth, even if it costs him his job.” In today’s commercial world neither the boss nor the subordinate can follow this maxim. My dear friends, COVID-19 brought us a new dimension of life. I never compromised with anything and only did  what I wanted to do. However, this current situation has taught me to adjust and adapt. I realized that I can survive with minimum resources. This lockdown has made me differentiate between needs, wants and luxury as I am becoming truly a family man. Today while working from home I am learning to find joy in small things and simple moments. I am sure that these will become sweet memories for life. Edited and compiled by Sakshi




LOCKDOWN This is the most valuable and precious time, Use it wisely rather than going out and paying a huge. Don’t stress yourself with fake news, Which does nothing but uses up all your fuse. Spend time with your family, By maintaining Sanity. Let nature relieve its life, Before it starts to strife. Bring peace to the world, RG When everything is bought and sold. Do the things for you wanted time, This might light up your drowsy face with a smile. Let us be a bunch of sensible people rather than fools, This is our earth and we going to rule. Till then let us enjoy this valuable time with our family, No matter what’s in store and stay happily. This is the most valuable and precious time, Use it wisely rather than going out and paying a huge.


Speaker Toastmasters Club

NEW BEGINNINGS Night is covered with all sad clouds Still the sun will shine with a smile New beginnings are awaiting with warm arms.


Amdavad Toastmasters Club


Roads are barren with the scorching sun Still there will be rain or thunder New beginnings are awaiting with warm arms. Monster of melancholy and sickness enjoys its existence Still humanity will spread love and happiness New beginnings are awaiting with warm arms.



The Lockdown Schedule We are in lockdown now for almost a month. However, contrary to the general feeling of “going insane”, I am getting used to this new normal so well that I can claim sanity at its best for me. The new routine seems as perfect as a clockwork. Let me share a glimpse into my routine here.

TARUN GAKHAR Powai Toastmasters Club

The day begins with some strenuous and exhausting workouts (Well honestly, there are simple stretches that too thrice a week) streamed through FB live. This taxing workout is followed by a sunbathing session in the balcony, which I love so much.

The workday begins with a daily virtual catchup meeting with my team (when on mute it is spent browsing through e-newspapers). This meeting is followed by usual calls to or meetings with extended teams or suppliers etc. The lunch break begins with having some more vitamin D in the balcony and a great home-cooked meal afterwards. The meals are taken keeping in mind the lockdown instructions for my tummy are, “Lockdown is going on, make sure you do not come out!” As there are no free lunches, the price for a good meal is paid by offering service of washing the dishes. Despite being at home, no siestas possible as the post-lunch session is also packed with back to back calls and meetings. For some free time in between NDTV gives the good company. And at the weekends? Well, they seem busier now with reading, teaching and some “ME” time. I plan to reread all the books on the shelf as the lockdown is further extended. Going by what Winston Churchill advises, “Never waste a good crisis”, teaching is a skill I look forward to exploring. Teaching math to my boys in class XII and class VIII. Catching up on some adventure series inspired by real life like “State of Siege” “Special Ops” is my “ME” time. These are now the next best things to movies. Having seen these unprecedented times, the benefit of this crisis is the embracing of minimalist lifestyle. Continuing to live with such minimalist lifestyle even after the lockdown is perhaps the need of the hour. Edited and compiled by Vaibhav



UNVEIL Nature Speaks to You Do you have a happy place? I do. I have this image of me in a meadow, basking in the soft rays of the morning sun, feeling the grass beneath me and a soft breeze in my hair. My eyes are closed and the air is filled with sweet fragrance s of wild roses, daisies, jasmine, lavender, periwinkles, you name it and it’s there. This is my happy place.


Speakathon Kalwa Toastmasters Club

As Monet says, “I must have flowers, always and always”. Well, at least in some form. Almost 3 years ago, I saw a withered rose painted on the cover page of The Economist. For someone who almost never reads the Economist, the magazine never looked more appealing. I took out my painting brushes after 14 years and started to paint the rose. The more I painted, the more I realised how naturally it came to me. And why shouldn’t it? For as long as I can remember I have been obsessed with the botanical world. In fact, I recollect being a lot into Botany in school. I used to spend hours outdoors observing and collecting every different kind of leaf I could possibly find. Holding the paintbrush after more than a decade made me feel many things- excitement, nostalgia, joy. But most importantly, it gave me solace. It took me to a calmer, brighter place, away from the chaos of the real world. A place where I could create anything I wanted. The possibilities were endless and the ideas were limitless. This was my space and I had the power to create elements from my happy place, things that I have always been drawn to, things that I wish I had access to, things of beauty.

And it was never the same again. For the first time in many years, I knew exactly what I wanted to do. I could not be more sure. And that is how I rekindled my lost hobby. Today, 3 years later, I am still very much in love (if not more) with the entire process that goes into making a piece of botanical art. The way the paint blends onto the paper when my brush touches it, the way two colours come together beautifully to create a completely unique third colour, the way I can create every gorgeous flower on the face of the planet with just some paint and brush strokes, gives me unparalleled satisfaction. Painting botanicals has now become a part of who I am. I paint almost every day. My colleagues often ask me how I manage to find time to paint so regularly. And I tell them, it’s not me who finds the time to paint. In fact, it is in the midst of water and colours that I, find myself. And I wonder if it is so because doing this brings me a little closer to my happy place?




Fate vs Free Will What COVID-19 made me realize that life is fragile and uncertain, and we should live in the moment, and do what we want to do. But at the same time, I was restless, so I decided to create more, read more and let this storm pass, by not talking about it. One of my favourite authors Jay Vasavada once mentioned a 72-year-old man’s story, who loved mountain climbing.

SAMEER SAVALIYA Amdavad Toastmasters Club

Somebody asked him, ‘Aren’t you afraid of death?’ He replied, ‘I cannot postpone my happiness and thrill just because of the fear of death.’ Have you found an activity which you love more than fear the of death? In moments of crisis like COVID-19, I believe creativity can flourish, and we can know our panic quotient. This kind of crisis make us stronger than before, teach us better about our hidden fears, instincts and make us choose between Essentials and Non Essentials. The only thing we need to realize is although fate brought this virus, our free will allow us to face this time and utilize it for meditation, introspection and creativity. I have decided to read more books (fiction), have faith in the universe and respond to this crisis by creating more. What about you? I am reminded of one of the popular Bollywood songs, where the protagonist has experienced the power of time over the human will. here is the song, that can make us realize the value of present moment and humility. आदमी को चा हये व त से डर कर रहे कौन जाने कस घड़ीव त का बदले मजाज़व त से दन और रात व त से दन और रातव त से कल और आजव त क हर शह ग़लामव त का हर शह पे राज Listen to the full song here: Edited and compiled by Fatima




Empathy Not only a friend, but I also find a family here too. The vibe, the clap, the smile, and the charm Don't allow me to miss a meeting. Never they blamed, Never criticized They taught me with lot more I owe to write and emphasize. A weekend in town, I keep finding Toastmasters club to visit. That's how they made me familiar with the city. Wherever I go I find a hand not only to shake with me but also ears to listen to stories from me.


TCS Maitree Pune Toastmasters Club

I was demotivated not sure where I was leading this life. They taught me not only to speak but also to smile and speak. The positive vibes and empathy, renewed me as I was yesterday. And I took a step for my self-growth today. I win or lose that will never count I stand and speak confidently that's the real paramount. Not only a friend, but I also find a family here too.

Winner - Trivia - Feb - March

Parijat Garg Baner Toastmasters Club PAGE 31



My Lockdown Experience

March 20th was like any usual day, all things were high on energy, Though we all knew and took necessary precautions against the COVID-19 pandemic and we all were informed we would have to work from home from next week we weren’t sure the situation could be as dangerous as a lockdown.

SWATHI Wakad Toastmasters Club

The immediate evening we heard the Prime Minister of India announcing a complete lockdown till March 31st. I had never taken leave throughout the financial year and planned to take a week’s off yet in a matter of days our busy life came to a halt.

People suddenly started missing the office, and the same crowd who were waiting for the holiday to be announced. Life became so restricted we weren’t even allowed to go to the park in our apartment. I made a regular schedule to keep myself busy. My regular day began at 7 AM. Exercise is important to have a healthy life. I don’t like regular work out of extreme hardcore work out so made skipping my best friend to take care of me in this lockdown time. I enjoyed it gave me a good start for the day. As house help wasn't allowed in the apartment everyone in the house is performing certain duties. I was given responsibility for cleaning utensils and preparing breakfast. The day goes by working at home and then switching to office work which ends roughly by 7 PM. Post which I usually give some time to my hobbies like sketching and singing and even writing scripts for my speeches. Apart from all these took time, I even video call with cousins and old friends. The virtual meetings came as a surprise and I could meet all Toastmasters who weren’t able to attend the meetings because of busy schedules. Playing ludo with family had also become routine after dinner. To my surprise, all 90’s top serials and cartoons came back on TV like Shaktiman, Disney hour, Aladdin and Ramayan. This bought back my childhood. Still I miss the weekend party. All we need to do to understand the necessity of the hour and act accordingly. The tough time shall pass and days would come back normal challenging times would turn into beautiful memories. I know the lockdown has been extended so all we need to do is stay calm and concentrate on positive things. The tough time shall pass and bringing back smiles and soon we will make beautiful memories. Edited and compiled by Tanya



UNVEIL Women On The Go!

The clock was ticking away at a fast pace, it always races when you are late, especially in the morning. I was getting late for a meeting. Oh! How much do we women have to prepare? Not only for the main points of the meeting, presentation, research, documents, but much more, whether my dress is well ironed, hair soft smooth & well in place, that perfect makeup, matching accessories, and how can I forget matching nail polish!


Santacruz Speakers Toastmasters Club

Nail Polish! OMG! Everything ticked on my checklist but my nail polish was not in place. I had no time to apply it right now, what to do? Therewas no way I was going without my nail polish. The nail polish bottle was staring at me with anticipation, but I stared back totally flummoxed. My moments of confusion were interrupted when my maid announced that the lift had come; it was a moment of a battle between defeat or using your wisdom & winning it.

I chose to win! I chose the crazy side of my brain to overcome this challenge. I grabbed the bottle, rushed inside the lift & without wasting any more minutes I opened the bottle & began the mastered art of painting my nails in the oddest condition inside my lift. I finished painting one hand by the time I reached the ground floor now, it was the turn of the other hand while waiting for my cab I started painting the other hand in my compound itself. Most oblivious to the confused looks of maids, drivers & watchmen around me I continued my mastered art with faster strokes like Sachin Tendulkar hitting each ball with his master stroke. One of my neighbours, a  young guy, came down & started kicking his bike, the noise distracted me & I looked up, he was amused to the core & tried to suppress his giggles but hey, did that embarrass me? Nah, no way. Though I can imagine how funny it looked - me all dressed, waiting for my cab & applying nail polish in the building compound but nothing can deter a woman who will not rest in peace until her nails look prim & perfect for the meeting, not even this guy looking so amused & enjoying himself while kicking his bike. With my chin held high with pride I glared into his face & asked, "you are amused, aren't  you? Go ahead, laugh your heart out it doesn't matter", he was caught off guard, he tried to be polite & retorted, "No, I am not amused, in fact, I am impressed you are a woman on the go!" Woman on the go! Ah, now that stuck into my head.

Woman On The Go! Really? Of course, I was & I am proud of myself. I am on the go on my wheelchair, I am on the go in my head, in my heart, in my decisions, in my determination, on the go in every way. And so are you, all you lovely women in my life. Go, Go My Fair Lady, You Are On The Go!




Invest in Yourself Since 25th March 2020, our country has been in lockdown. A phase, we have never seen before. Colleges, malls, market, multiplexes, restaurant and more, you name it and they are shut. Even meeting friends or family members who don’t live with you isn’t possible anymore! But do you really think we are all locked down?

RAVI KARIA Gurukul Education Toastmasters Club

Well, I for one don’t think so! Remember the story of Ms Arunima Sinha, the world’s first female amputee to scale Mount Everest? She was pushed from a running train by some robbers while she was resisting them. She fell on the railway track and another train on a parallel track crushed her left leg below the knee. She was in the hospital for almost 4 months (quarantined) and there she thought & decided to climb Mount Everest and the rest is history. So, do we really need such jerks in our life to think?I believe it’s the going out of the home (body movements) that are locked down but not the brain! Chances are you might wonder, what is the best I could do? Well, we must do the things we have been neglecting for a long time because of our busy schedules.

Health Home Hobby Health: - work upon your health Physical: Do exercise and yoga Emotional: Write down the word TIME on a piece of paper. Now, please erase the first two letters.  What remains is ME.   Do you have this me-time of yours? Take some  time, talk to yourself,   meditate, listen to music or do anything that calms you Mental:   Try out some activities to boost your creativity such as playing games like Sudoku, chess, solving puzzles or simple board games.




Invest in Yourself Home: - work upon your Relationship Ask a question to yourself - when was the last time I spent some Quality time with your parents? Before the 25th of March weren’t we busy in our own life? We do love and respect our parents, but do we understand them? Lockdown has given us an opportunity or a chance to understand them and be understood. Spend some time with parents and grandparents. Maybe they want to say something or they want to hear something from you. Encash the opportunity.

Hobby: - Nurture it A couple of weeks back, I was thinking that if I have extra time, I would have learnt some new skills, new dance or would have tried some guitar.Now, I have the golden opportunity to learn all the things I wanted to learn and develop a hobby that I’ve always wished. Why don’t you try to find and nurture your hobby too?

I request you to utilize your first half of the day on these 3 H’s and rediscover yourself before this time passes.   This Lockdown may never ever happen again in our lifetime and though it is not the best of times, it is important to be optimistic so we can utilise it and optimise it to the best of our abilities.

Edited and compiled by Tanya




Joint Online Meet of Toastmasters Club of Pune North West & Wakad Toastmasters Club held on 11th April

200th Meeting of Baner Toastmasters Club, Pune held on 11th April

Division A joint Meeting held on 11th April

50th Meeting of SoBo Toastmasters Club, Mumbai held on 12th April

Nagpur Toastmasters Club 150th Milestone Meeting on 25th April




District PR Manager Ravi Sharma

District Editor

Lead Designer Nigel Gomes

Haleemunnisa Fatima


Sakshi S.

Tanya Arora

Vaibhav Zarkar


Abhijit Roy

Aseema Sulakhe


Nanda Gopal


Artwork by Ankita Gupta Baner Toastmasters Club

Communicate 98 April 2020 Issue Designed by: Nigel Gomes & Haleemunnisa Fatima A DISTRICT 98 PRODUCTION

Profile for D98 Newsletter

Communicate 98 April 2020 Edition  

The District 98 Monthly Newsletter, Communicate 98 presents the April issue of the term 2019-20!

Communicate 98 April 2020 Edition  

The District 98 Monthly Newsletter, Communicate 98 presents the April issue of the term 2019-20!


Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded