During the period of heavy rains, the village roads become impassable and trading has to be conducted in boats. Clearly, the village of Ulapur is a remote rural village lacking most of the amenities to be found in big cities such as Calcutta. In fact, the village post office would not have been established had it not been for the efforts of the owner of the indigo factory nearby. A lightless thatched shed houses the postmaster’s office and living quarters; thus, it is understandable that the postmaster finally asks for a transfer from his seniors in Calcutta, citing the “unhealthiness of the place.”
Although Ulapur is a far-flung rural place, the incessant heavy rains make it all the more desolate. The postmaster falls sick during a period of heavy rains and yearns for the company of his caring family; instead, he has to make do with Ratan’s tender care, for the little orphan girl thinks of him as her “Dada,” her family. Ratan is the postmaster’s little companion and helper around the house; he spends most of his free time talking to her and teaching her things like reading. The two become quite close, and the little girl is engulfed by grief when she learns that her “Dada,” the postmaster, is leaving Ulapur, never to return.