EAWLC Member Salon Minutes

At East and West Learning Connections, we have been holding an online salon for registered members once a month since July 2022. Members and their families are welcome to take the opportunity to meet each other on Zoom, share recent experience, encounters, thoughts, and hear a guest speaker’s stories.

Usually, in the first half, participants take turns to talk for about 2 minutes, then take a couple of questions, sharing anything they would like to share with other members – about a book, a movie, an incident at work, a recent encounter, an opinion, a concern, etc. For the second half, we usually invite a guest speaker to share their interesting experience, knowledge, or expertise. We go with the natural flow at the meeting. The key is to know more about one another, expand our scope of knowledge, and have some intellectual amusement.

Salon Minutes

April 28, 2024

  1. 2-minute sharing: the uncertainties vs certainties in the study of string theory vs financial market, soft skills from Ph.D training, a crazy spinning experience in the dark, the reason for two literature majors to come…
  2. Our member Dr. Fathi Darrag gave a presentation “Jon Fosse: The Man and His Work” to introduce the Nobel Prize in Literature 2023 winner, The Norwegian writer and Dramatist Jon Fosse.

Fosse’s work includes more than seventy novels, poems, children books and dramatic literature, and are considered a modern continuation of the dramatic tradition established by Henrik Ibsen.

March 24, 2024

Our member Dudu shared her 8 years’ fasting experience, things to prepare to watch out for safety, and answered questions from listeners.

As per participants’ request, we recorded Dudu’s presentation (in Mandarin).

January 28, 2024

Our member Ping Xiao shared her trip to China during the winter break, things she felt happy about as well as concerned for.  Other members who visited families and friends in China last year also told their stories, and some touching moments.

December 26, 2023

  1. 2-minute sharing: office dynamics of different immigrant groups shared by friends at a Christmas party, Adam Grant’s book, a tea appreciation gathering, a love story between a wheel-chaired dancer and a policeman…
  2. Grace Yang shared how to drink Chinese-style afternoon tea, and basic knowledge about tea in the Q&A session.  We are seriously thinking to throw a tea party after next Annual General Meeting!

November 28, 2023

1. 2-minute sharing: a French play, pros and cons of decentralized banking system, medical will

2. Wei Wang continued to share her knowledge on food and nutrition.

October 24, 2023

1. 2-minute sharing: a conversation between mother and son, hiring experience as an interviewer…

2. Wei Wang shared her expertise in nutrition and healthy eating as a certified diabetes and bariatric educator. We were refreshed with latest nutrition instructions and her daily practicing experience. Time was just too short. Wei will continue with her wonderful presentation and Q&A’s in November’s salon

September 26, 2023

1. 2-minute sharing: Ordinary Canadian’s kindness felt in an kayaking for the vision impaired, a new runner’s experience, a mother’s aspiration to communicate with son by learning about investment, a classical music concert lover’s recommendation, a traveller’s favorite country and why…

2. Michelle Wang introduced how she started to do value investment, and her observations and encounters in the trip to the Berkshire’s 2023 annual shareholder meeting, where she saw Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger.

August 22, 2023

Arwa and Yang had a very pleasant chat and found out their original families shared quite some traits, such as a loving and open-minded father, and a youngest daughter who could go defiant, even though Arwa came from Yemen, and Yang came from China, two supposedly patriarchal countries traditionally. Yang was fascinated by Arwa’s introduction of the situation in Yemen as well as her family’s stories.

Date: July 25, 2023

Michelle was happy to find out a resource teaching people how to do camping. Frank enjoyed free chats at member salon, and shared a couple of project he was planning – a family-oriented Sci-fi reading and presentation with attractive prizes, and an article he was writing on choices of educational paths in the context of different purposes of education. Yang shared her experience of getting involved in school councils as a new comer, and a difficult letter she wrote to her son’s teacher the first year they came to Canada.

Date: June 27, 2023, Cancelled

Date: May 23, 2023

1. 2-minute sharing: a documentary and talk with filmmakers at Free Screening at the TIFF; an invitation to FACON2023 (the Fulbright International Conference ); musical life alternatives…

2. Judith introduced a course she took in Scotland in March, Eldest Daughter Retreat. A lot of eldest daughters seemed to share these traits: 1

Date: April 25,2023

1. 2-minute sharing: how to engage employees in a hybrid working environment; making new friends after moving to Hamilton; getting to know Canada more by doing volunteer work; kid performing at the annual Ottawa Kiwanis Music Festival (https://www.ottawakiwanismusicfestival.com)

2. Arthur introduced his trip to the Niagara area looking for a farm to live. The road conditions, the environment, the houses, the prices, the schools… We almost need not do any more research should we want to buy a farm for our own! His cares for farmers (both in Canada and in China), and passion on organic agriculture was really touching. Everybody wished he and his family could find a suitable farm to realize their dreams!

Date: February 6, 2023

1. 2-minute sharing by everybody: a blue, golden and snow-white birthday on the slope, a versatile university student’s on-campus life, a dream of becoming a farmer and a writer, theatre experience with grandsons…

2. Alice talked about her trip to Montreal last December as she was invited to read her poems at COP15, the UN’s Biodiversity Conference. We had the privilige to listen to her recital of a couple of her nature poems. It was just breath-taking to hear the beautiful, and philosophical poetry in her resonant voice! I’d encourage everyone to check out her website and her forthcoming poetry book, Knife on Snow, in which Alice “employs history, myth, and science to understand a world ablaze” : www.alicemajor.com https://www.turnstonepress.com/news/news-releases/in-the-works-poetry-by-alice-major.html

Date: December 5, 2022

1. 2-minute speech: two wonderful documentaries on weekend, testing Radon in your home, transfer pricing, What Strange Paradise…

2. Frank talked about his experience of organizing an AEDI (anti-racism, equity, diversity & inclusion) panel discussion at a private high school, and shared his thought about parenting. In members’ discussion, other interesting topics emerged, such as Winston Churchill’s transforming political standpoints, Kahlil Gibran’s poem on parent-child relationship, and the value of non-violence stated by social activist Grace Lee Boggs.

Date: November 7, 2022

1. Two-minute sharing: Variety Village Show, dispute with child, life changing experience from village to cities, why people gathered to look at a construction hole…

2. Judith shared her involvement in climate change activism, did a quiz on climate change control goals and performance, and triggered deep discussion on what we can do as an individual, feasibilities of current goals, and how to balance people’s needs an environmental concerns, especially considering the differen development stages of countries across the globe, etc..

Date: October 3, 2022

1. 2-minute sharing by everybody: mediation course, gardening newbie experience, mattress check-up, protest against Highway 413 proposal, kindness encounters…

2. Guest speaker Ye shared her experience in France, Hong Kong and Ottawa, and facilitated a subtle discussion about human behaviour, communication and community connections.

Date: August 1, 2022

1. 2-minute sharing by everybody

2. Yingfeng talked about his thought on encouraging girls to do STEM through coding training on interesting things like gaming, and triggered some discussion.

Date: Monday July 4, 2022

In 2-minute Talk & Answer: She had a backyard gathering with a couple of friends over the weekend, enjoying nice weather, girls’ chit-chats over refreshing milk strawberry shakes made by her son, and a lunch at a very good Chinese restaurant. She started to grow vegetables and herbs during the pandemic, and developed a passion and quite some knowledge, and would love to invite members to a party to share the harvest. She share a passage about Mo Yan, the Nobel Prize in Literature winner, telling about fears and the definition of bravery. Guest speaker Edwin shared his projects, school life at the University of Toronto Schools, how he was interviewed etc. He welcomed us to try the food delivery app he was developing with his friends which aimed to provide more reasonably priced food delivery service. Here’s the link if you would like to participate as an MyBite Beta Testing Potential Users: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeEYKSAMwvU6a4qqdG-AbNCopSfc94JUwGJoLyYXSozZa6eCw/viewform?usp=sf_link

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