BANGKOK — The novel strain of coronavirus, a cause of nationwide fear in recent weeks, appears to do little dampen Thailand’s Valentine’s Day spirit.
As usual, there are mass marriage registration in major district offices across the country, daredevil stunts like tying the knot in the sea and on cliffsides, and rituals that pay tribute to local traditions.
Among those spreading the love is the elder sister of King Vajiralongkorn, who published a Valentine card on her Instagram. It featured a picture of a cupid that she drew herself.
“Happy Valentine’s Day!! Sending love and encouragement to us all! I drew this cupid on my Samsung Note 10 to encourage everyone to move forward together,” Princess Ubolratana wrote.
In Bangkok, Thai and foreign lovers joined a long line at the Bang Rak district office to register their marriages. The venue is associated with weddings because Bang Rak sounds similar to “Place of Love” in Thai.
Inside a quarantine center in Chonburi, evacuees from the virus-hit Wuhan city are feeling the love when navy officials surprised them with red roses attached to their daily meals.
Love’s put couples on top of the world in an annual marriage registration on a cliffside in Krabi.
Now that you’re lucky in love, will you be lucky in game, too? Officials in Korat hand out lottery tickets to couples who registered their marriage.
Under the sea, darling it’s better: In Trang, couples equipped with scuba gear dove into married life in a stunt to promote local diving tourism.
At a temple in Suphanburi province, monks hand out free bags of sugar to worshipers to sweeten their Valentine’s Day.
Who says Valentine is only for teens? In Uttaradit, a 90-year-old man married his 65-year-old girlfriend after dating for more than two decades.
In Satun, couples got married after walking under the “Gate of Love” on Khai island. The geological landmark is believed to bring love as solid as a rock to those who passed under it.
In Surin, couples get their marriage certificates on the back of elephants. The event is inspired by wedding traditions of a local mahout tribe called Kui dating back centuries.
And what is a family without food? In Chachoengsao, officials gift newly wed couples with free rice cookers. They’re gonna need them.
Even the Muslim-majority province of Yala joined in the fun. Couples wed en masse on the Yi La Pan Bridge, built by the Japanese army during its invasion of Malay peninsula in the Second World War.
And lastly, because this is Amazing Thailand after all, there’s “Good Activity: Valentine WOW” in Phitsanulok, whatever that means.