Thais make merit on auspicious day

Thais make merit on auspicious day

Some 1,000 people give alms to 109 monks in Nakhon Ratchasima's Muang district on Saturday morning. (Photo by Prasit Tangprasert)
Some 1,000 people give alms to 109 monks in Nakhon Ratchasima's Muang district on Saturday morning. (Photo by Prasit Tangprasert)

Provincial governors led hundreds of thousands of Thais all over the country to make merit in various activities to mark His Majesty the King's 88th birthday on Saturday.

All of them wore yellow, the royal colour.

Among the standard activities in all provinces are giving morning alms to monks, paying homage to His Majesty's image, signing well-wishing messages and lighting candles in the evening, all to show their love and loyalty to the monarch.

The number of monks receiving the alms varied from 89, an auspicious number based on His Majesty's age plus one for longevity according to Thai belief, to 119.

In some provinces, addition activities were planned such as releasing fish into rivers, buying cows and buffaloes destined for slaughterhouses, donating blood, ordaining novices, among others.

Some people planned activities of their own to celebrate the occasion.

In Phitsanulok, Thana Thientanoo, a fried chicken vendor opposite the governor's residence, offered free chicken throughout the day.

Most of his customers still offered to pay but Mr Thana declined to accept the money.

"This is the least I can do on this auspicious day. I want to help people save their meal costs," he said.

Inspired by a shop in Prachin Buri which does this every Father's Day, Mr Thana said he began to offer the free food since the Queen's Birthday on Aug 12, 2014.

The fried chicken stall of Mr Thanoo in Phitsanulok offers free meals throughout the day on Saturday. (Photo by Chinawat Singha)

A boy gives alms and food to novices in Prachin Buri on Saturday. (Photo by Manit Sanabboon)

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