It was in November 2010, indeed, 7 years ago already. Prepared at first for those who lost their jobs, in the middle of the recession. I remembered the times when it happened to me. I remembered, that we are not defined by our title. I remembered that I could use the qualities I had to something so different, and even enjoy it a lot more.
There were desperate times for me, around 1980, when I had to leave Washington, DC where I worked for 3 years and hoped to stay forever. PhD Research Chemist, two children, for the first ever time, I had an apartment furnished with love, with old brick and brack I loved, friends and a social life. And, yes, Toastmasters helped to get a voice.
Back in France, I was told, "too old! woman and not born here".
Realising, after running from office to office, place to place to find a job, that it will be not easy not fast, and I needed fast to be able to have my son `14 at the time back with me, I knocked at a door, "Helping you find work" in a tiny museum.
Before I have offered this story, I have assisted to a Toastmasters contest in Canary Wharf. A Bank director arrived impeccably dressed, and at the beginning of the speech, his pants fell, his coat and shirt disappeared: all begun to laugh and did not end till he finished. He remained in jogger suit, of course.
I thought, this story about changing profession, let itself use the same: I took off my shirt. Laugh begun and did not stop till end. They laughed so much "why, when, how to make it happen again?" That was the starting point. That evening, a Standup Comedian, also telling a story told me "you are a natural" and gave me a card of the Comedy School. All started there, my life got another turn.
I discovered, I like making audience laugh! I discovered at age 77, about a year later, after three Standup Comedy Workshops and two cataract operations, that I can make laugh! That everyone can learn the Craft of comedy, and with practice get results. "Develop comedian eyes". See the world around differently. Extract from all the funny.