It’s REALLY hard to stop playing with a speech.  Really hard.  You keep thinking you’re done but you’re not.  I tweaked the ending one more time and I like it more.  I’m not touching it again until after Division H finals on Saturday.

Rehearsed about 5 times, rehearsed the end module about 20 times.  I have to say I’m still pretty tired and I’m looking forward to going to the big city early on Friday to do not much of anything.  (Except pick up my white board material for covering my entire bedroom wall, open a new TM bank account, take the Pres out for dinner and go to my TM meeting.  Easy.)

The Man got back to me and we’re going to chat tomorrow but he sent me the most amazing email today that made me fly for a while.  He said I’m terrific!  (wow!)  but I’m nowhere near the speaker I’m GOING to be and that he would help me mine that gold.  Exciting scary stuff.

Yes, I AM thinking about the international competition…not a lot specifically, but generally, yes.  I am not sure what I am going to talk about because I’m not sure what’s appropriate.  I guess my big story is where I’ve come from, where I am now and how I got there.  It may not be the best story though.  I really want help with that part.  I’d like to have a brainstorming session with 3 or 4 experienced Toastmasters that I trust and connect with and see what we come up with.  This is all in the future though and I don’t want to give it too much energy right now.  I still have a contest to compete in this Saturday.  My stomach is doing dips already when I think about it.

I have to remember though.  This is a freebie.  I shouldn’t even BE here so I want to make the most of it.   I want to have FUN!  I want to showcase this speech.  And the truth is, I REALLY want to compete at the B.C. District finals.  I love this speech and I relish the thought of giving it on that big stage to all my friends.  I want to do the entire process justice, and that means making sure I am in the right frame of mind on Saturday.

Luckily, the friend’s house that I’m staying at on Friday night lives next to one of my favourite churches anywhere.  It is a beautiful old wooden church, over 100 years old, which is rare for a new city like Vancouver.  It smells of incense and it is enveloping and projecting at the same time.  I can go there for Mass on Saturday morning and that makes me so happy.

Tonight, I brought a young friend, a 17 year old young lady, to our club.  She and I have had a connection for a while and she has asked me to help her.  I am excited about giving to her what others have given to me.  I look so forward to showing this young lady what is already inside of her, waiting to come out.  I was so happy that she reached out.  I feel so privileged that God is giving us this opportunity to grow together.  It’s an opportunity to do for her what I wish someone had done for me at the same age.  Thank you God.

And there’s one last thing that happened today.  Something pretty……well, something pretty incredible.  Something I was never sure would ever happen.  Something that God made happen for our family in the gentlest, most unsuspecting of ways.  Today we signed the papers.  It has taken a few months to get it all done, but we are officially owners of our first home.

When we left Egmont last September after 8.5 years of living in this tiny, (population 150) oceanside village, it was a difficult transition.  Especially for Meaghan who moved away from her best friend across the street and her beloved backyard beach.  She CRIED.  A lot.  And I just found out recently that she had been FAKING an allergy (making herself sneeze!) FOR A YEAR so that we would move back to Egmont.   Geez, talk about tenacious.

But the opportunity presented itself to us this year.   And we just prayed that if God wanted us to have this place, He would help us get it.  So here we are, in one of the most outrageously priced markets in the world, proud owners of a 950 square foot 2 bedroom house on a third of an acre.   Very happy to be here.  Could life get any better?

Well, yeah.  It could.  I’m going to see 2000 World Champion Ed Tate next Monday night in Vancouver give his presentation “You too, can be a World Champion!”  An amazing person reserved a seat for me.  An amazing person with a lot of faith in me.

What have I done to deserve all this?????