Nov. 26, 2012 at 9:54 AM ET
At an age when most people are just years away from retirement, Prince Charles continues waiting to begin the job he was literally born for.
At 64, no other heir to the throne has waited longer to become monarch than the Prince of Wales, and the wait has not gone unnoticed by the public.
Comments Charles made about slow restoration work on the British stately home, Dumfries House, have been viewed as a metaphor for frustration over his long wait to become king.
Queen Elizabeth, who is 86, has been clear that she does not plan to abdicate the throne, which she may sit on for an additional decade or more based on family genetics. Her mother, the Queen Mum, passed away at age 101.
The Queen has enjoyed both good health and a popularity boost, thanks to the festive Diamond Jubilee earlier this year. She received an approval rating of 48 percent in an Ipsos Mori poll released earlier this month.
Unfortunately, the same poll listed Charles with 21 percent, pitting him against the most well-liked royal: his son, William, who received a 62 percent rating. Charles also came in behind his other son, Prince Harry, 36 percent, and William's wife, Kate, 23 percent.
“Perhaps Camilla and Charles are in the sandwich generation of royals. Okay, they’re respected, but between the Queen and William and Kate they don't get much of a look in,” royal expert Camilla Tominey told TODAY. “But it doesn't really matter what the public thinks. Charles will be king one day.”
Until then, he continues to back his image as one of the hardest working royals, devoting his time supporting the Prince’s Trust and numerous charities he runs. He also has been outspoken on the issues he supports, including global warming, wind farms and education.