Journey to the World’s highest post office in Spiti Valley

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Photo of Journey to the World’s highest post office in Spiti Valley by Vanshika Oberoi

Envision the force of my energy as I moved to the world's most astounding post office. Roosted at 15,500 ft above ocean level, it is just fitting that it is situated in India, home to the world's most broad postal framework. Hikkim, the town to which I made this journey, 23 km from Kaza, which is the primary town in Himachal Pradesh's desolate Spiti Valley. I didn't know what's in store, getting welcomed into the postmaster's home for a cup of chai came as a pleasant surprise. I ran furnished with 2 postcards, previously jotted with messages only to be composed for myself in that heavenly space.

The Hikkim post office opened on November 5, 1983, and the man who holds my fantasy work—Rinchen Chhering—has been the branch postmaster here since its initiation. He was 22 years of age when he assumed responsibility. Today, as he stamps those letters and postcards, it's a go about as well-known as planting peas in his terrace or drinking tea. This unnoticeable little Spitian office which bends over as Chhering's house is the main channel to the world for Hikkim's 161 or so occupants—there is no cell phone signal or internet to associate with. Like whatever remains of the valley, the mail station is additionally closed for a half year of the year due to snow.

It is here that the priests from the close-by Komik religious community get their passports to attempt abroad journeys, where nearby ranchers keep up bank accounts, and inquisitive travelers come to send postcards. Two runners alternate in conveying mail by walking from Hikkim to Kaza each morning, from where it is transported to Reckong Peo, ahead to Shimla, further via train to Kalka, stacked on a transport again went to Delhi, and disseminated by rail or air contingent on its destination. The most intriguing piece of the voyage for me remains the climb (a "one-hour speedy stroll" for local people) which the runners embrace daily , from Kaza, passing drowsy bharal and ibex along an unsafe way scratched into the tall, dry desert mountain that isolates Hikkim from Kaza. I trust my postcards came to Kaza before my cab arrived. Similarly. I could scarcely hold on to get these postcards with the renowned stamp back home in Delhi.

Photo of Hikkim Post Office, Hikkim, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vanshika Oberoi
Photo of Hikkim Post Office, Hikkim, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vanshika Oberoi
Photo of Hikkim Post Office, Hikkim, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vanshika Oberoi
Photo of Hikkim Post Office, Hikkim, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vanshika Oberoi
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