I've always wanted to have a butterfly collection and now I have one.

When I went to carnival in Trinidad, there were butterflies everywhere.  The elaborate and elegant costumes of the Carnival Kings and Queens were the best man-made butterflies I have ever seen.  These butterflies are at least twenty feet high and twenty-five feet wide, and as they flutter by I'm awestruck with their beauty. 

Carnival butterflies aren't a product of evolution.  They are the result of the craftsmanship and hard work of ordinary people who have extraordinary dreams.  They aren't the work of professionals working in high tech production facilities.  They are backyard creations that evolve in barns and shacks all over Trinidad. 

All of the glitter and glitz in these costumes cost lots of money - some cost more than fifty-thousand dollars to design and create.  Glamour and glory await the winners of the Carnival King and Queen competitions in Port of Spain, and the prizes for the winners help defray the expenses of building them.


We visited one backyard production facility where they made the costume that came in second place at the King and Queen competition.  Inside the ramshackle barn, they were putting finishing touches on their hopes for 2006.  We weren't allowed to touch or photograph it, and we understood why.  These large costumes are fragile, and if we inadvertently broke something or sullied it, they would have to spend hours repairing the damage.  The prohibition on photos was simply a matter of self-defense.  They were competing with dozens of other designs and needed to produce something unique that startled the senses and overwhelmed the competition.  I'm sure carnival costume espionage is alive and well in Trinidad.

If you would like to see more carnival costumes from the King and Queen Competition, visit our photo galleries and click on "Trini Carnival Monarchs".  I guarantee you won't be disappointed.  The butterfly collection is one of the best you will ever see.

There's something wonderful in the human spirit that urges us to aspire to greatness and to create beautiful things.  God placed a desire for excellence in our heart and mind, and that's one of the reasons I like carnival.  I see the glorious things that ordinary people can do when they dream about butterflies and then make their dream come true.

I believe in people, and I believe in hope, because God made it possible for ordinary people to do extraordinary things.


Life is good.


Log 1 Peter Pan Around the World
Log 2 Weapons of Mackerel Destruction
Log 3 Pirates of the Malacca Straits
Log 4 Kissing Cobras
Log 5 Debriosaurus Rex
Log 6 Go Ahead - Live Your Dreams

Log 7 The Man Who Built His House on a Rock
Log 8 Ambivalent Eagles
Log 9 One-Shovel Full at a Time
Log 10 Hitchhiker's Guide to Planet Earth

Log 11 Keeshond

Log 12 The Red Sea Blues

Log 13 Feel the Freedom

Log 14 The Danger Zone

Log 15 Lucky Man
Log 16 Dream Machines - Land Rover Defenders

Log 17 Trade Wind Dreams
Log 18 Logs With Fins
Log 19 Everywhere, Everything
Log 20 Shark Slayer Is History

Log 21 Viking Funeral - Burial at Sea
Log 22 Improbable and Impossible

Log 23 Keep on Trucking
Log 24 Dream Machines II
Log 25 Bodysurfing Whales
Log 26 Hitting the Wall
Log 27 Surviving the Savage Seas

Log 28 The Next Step
Log 29 Welcome to Barbados
Log 30 Atlantic Rally for Cruisers
Log 31 The Man with the Unplan
Log 32 Dali Dolphins
Log 33 Flying Like a Turtle
Log 34 The Foolish Man Built His House on a Pitch Lake
Log 35 Go West Young Man
Log 36 Crossing the Atlantic in a Row Boat
Log 37 The Unsinkable HMS Diamond Rock
Log 38 Catamaran Capsize in 170 mph Winds
Log 39 When Are You Coming Home?

Log 40 Master and Commander of Anegada - Frigate Birds
Log 41 Baths of Virgin Gorda - Batholiths of Central Arabia

Log 42 Free at Last
Log 43 Stalking the Wild Manatee

Log 44 Spreaderman
Log 45 Attack of the Flesh Eating Bees
Log 46 Sharks and Coconuts
Log 47 Stingray Picnic
Log 48 Boo Boo Hill
Log 49 Whale Slayers
Log 50 Noddies (Not Naughty)


Log 51 Exumas Land and Sea Park
Log 52 David and Goliath
Log 53 Turquoise Clouds of Paradise

Log 54 Momma Nightjar
Log 55 Maximillian The Great
Log 56 Chiton Kingdom
Log 57 Flying and Holding On
Log 58 Far Horizons
Log 59 Clouds Are a Sailor's Friend
Log 60 Getting Connected
Log 61 Fear
Log 62 Grand Schemes and Other Important Things
Log 63 If Jellyfish Had a Brain
Log 64 Cousins That Don't Kiss
Log 65 Swimming With Sharks
Log 66 Perfect the Way You Are
Log 67 Space Travelers
Log 68 Aliens
Log 69 Monsters of the Mind
Log 70 My Butterfly Collection
Log 71 Somewhere Other Than Here Societies
Log 72 Five-Hundred Pound Spiders
Log 73 Red Sea Sunsets
Log 74 Gibraltar Sunrise
Log 75 Big Sea - Small Ship
Log 76 Just Cruising
Log 77 Castle Mania
Log 78 You Must Know the Sea
Log 79 Flying Like a Goat
Log 80 The Joy of Photography
Log 81 Universal Camouflage
Log 82 My Rainbow Collection
Log 83 Indian Ocean Reward
Log 84 Fiber W
Log 85 Turkish Reflections
Log 86 Mirrors and Mirages
Log 87 Lycean Tombs Rock
Log 88 Rigging Emergency
Log 89 Pamukkale
Log 90 Volcano Land
Log 91 Sniffing the Air
Log 92 Why I Don't Kite Surf
Log 93 Resurrecting Exit Only in Turkey
Log 94 Greased Pole Competition
Log 95 Tsunami Damage
Log 96 Afraid of Living
Log 97 Living on the Edge
Log 98 Borneo Adventure
Log 99 Uligamu Tree Tender with Full Benefits
Log 100 God's Fireworks Display

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This web site is a companion to Outback and Beyond.com.