The birthday celebrations of King Bhumibol Adulyadej are muted this year as the king remains in hospital recovering from pneumonia.
Instead of hearing his annual speech and watching the king’s inspection of the glittering trooping of the colour, his loving subjects are worrying about his – and their nation’s – health.
More than 1.2 million people have visited the Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok where the king has been staying for more than two-and-a-half months.
Monks, schoolchildren, groups of work colleagues and ordinary people have travelled from across the country to bring flowers and write messages sending him their best.
“I am writing my wish – for the king to get well very soon so he can go back to the palace,” said a woman writing in one of the many royal-crested books.
Another woman broke down as she spoke: “The king right now does not feel well so we have come here to support him. I pray every morning for him to get well soon, as the people love him so much.”