As part of our road trip to Spiti Valley in Himachal Pradesh, one of our planned stopover was to visit Hikkim village, which holds the record of hosting the world's highest post office. This place remains cut off from other regions for half the year due to heavy snow fall over the passes. Its an extreme place to live.
We reached there around 11:00am, 6 Oct 2016. Temperate was around 5 degree Celcius even in mid-afternoon. Breathing was heavy due to low oxygen level. Without any sign-boards it was tough to really know if this was Hikkim or not. There was hardly anyone around to ask -- what would you expect in a village of only 200 people.
We got post cards and letters to send to all our family members across India and to ourselves too. We got them on our way from the resorts we stayed. So, obviously, we did not get postal stamps. We were expecting to get them from THE post office itself.
Once we figured out, it was indeed Hikkim, we walked down in search of the post office. We found it, but alas, there was nobody to buy stamps from. After a little bit of peeking around old windows and doors, an old lady came up and said "Postmaster Kaza gaya" (Postmaster has gone to the town of Kaza). We handed over all our letters to this old lady along with money for the stamps and requested her to hand it over to the post master. Thankfully the old lady understood Hindi and was able to speak a little too.
This place also happens to hold the record for the world's highest polling station. The next few posts on my blog will be a few more pictures about this beautiful place.
Pin code is: Pin Code 172114
Google maps location: https://goo.gl/maps/1vdn1rmdFTP2
Yesterday, 23rd October, we received the letter with the stamp of the post office, even though our family members are yet to receive it. Its a thing for keeps.The lower part of the image is the prized Post office stamp my daughter posted to herself for the records. :-)
Thank you, Mr Rinchen Chhering (post master whom we could not meet). As per this article, Mr Rinchen Chhering has been the post master for 29 years.