There is a fascination in my spirit for exotic beauty.  It is not just the mystique of the Hawaiian Islands or the lure of the Caribbean Islands.  Both locations are amazing.  The people, the history, the stunning sights, the ever presence of water giving contrasts of the blues against the greens.

Fauna is unique.  The wild pigs of the Hawaiians or the feral cattle of the Islands.  Some would even claim a herd of wild horses roam the mountains on these exotic locations.

Of course the colorful fish below the surface of the waters intrigues every skin diver or snorkel buff in the world.  I did swim in both waters and will never forget being ushered into the underwater world of God’s creative hand in fish shapes, sizes, colors and peculiarities.

Yet, the exotic places on this planet always include the flora of the warm tropical environs.  In particular I am always fascinated with the orchid.  They are like no other flower on the planet.

My camera never finds many dull moments.  The shutter is rapidly lining up frame after frame. Delicate petals and gentle blend of colors never ceases to amaze me.

Quietly, I thought that if I could raise these amazing plants of stunning beauty I would.  Yet, my green thumb never did appear.  However, I live that dream vicariously through my bride.

A number of orchids live in our home.  They are under the watch care of my better half.  She has learned how to nurture and cheer on these hardy yet particular plants.

The great test of success is the second bloom.  Once an orchid has lost its flowers, keeping the plant happy so that it will bloom again is like a new birth.  My wife has lost count of how many successful second births we have witnessed.

Each time buds appear we are thrilled.  More buds pop and soon a line of future blooms line a branch.  In anticipation we are always pleasantly surprised when a new day dawns and several blooms greet us to start a new day.

On Valentine’s Day I did not shower the love of my life with long stem flowers.  They are wonderful.  Instead, I paraded in four new additions to her orchid collection.  Both of us gazed at the gorgeous blooms and look forward to watching those plants reproduce again and again.  That is beauty of the blooming kind.

photo credit: brucefong cellphone photography

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