Hindi Language Blog

Finding your way … or an address Posted by on Feb 11, 2018 in Hindi Language

I’ve always admired the mailmen and women of India’s vast postal network. That they are able to navigate the country’s labyrinthine and often chaotic sprawl of addresses पता (pataa sing.), is nothing short of a feat.

A chawl. (Image by Abhinav Saxena on Flickr.com)

Many a times, rural addresses bear no more than the name of the person, with other landmarks like “next to a temple” मंदिर के पास(mandir ke paas) or “behind the school” पाठशाला के पीछे (paathshaala ke peeche) as part of the address. In places like Bangalore there are main streets and cross streets and often the intersection of 4th Main and 6th Cross may not logically be where you expect it to be.

However, the thing that I love about India is how any passerby will willingly drop what he/she is doing to help you find your destination. The local paan shopपान की दुकान / पनवारी  is always a lighthouse if you are trying to locate a person or address.

Paan shop. (Image by Scott Dexter on Flickr.com)

And oh, in India, the floor that’s at ground level is called the “ground floor.” The first floor is the first elevated floor. In the U.S., the ground-level floor would be the 1st floor, the first elevated floor would be the 2nd floor, and so forth.

Some words related to finding your way are given below. Be sure to ask for help by saying:

भाईसाहब / बहनजी, ये पता कहाँ मिलेगा?


Bhaisahab/behenji, yeh pata kahaan milega?
Sir/madam, where can I find this address?


पता pataaddress
किधर हैkidhar haiwhere is
कौनसे माले पेkaunse maale peon which floor
नुक्कड़ nukkadcorner
चौकchowkplaza/town square/village square
चालchawlmulti-storeyed housing with several small flats on each floor and common bathrooms/showers at the end of each floor/hallway
आगेaagein front
नज़दीक nazdeekclose by
दूरdoor (long o sound)far
सोसायटीsocietya building or group of residential buildings
पान की दुकान/पनवारी की दुकानpaan ki dukaan /panvaari dukaan/panvaaribetel leaf shop
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About the Author: Nitya

Namaste, friends. My name is Nitya. I was born and raised in Mumbai (formerly Bombay). I'm a native Hindi speaker. However, as life took me through school, college, work, and waves of friends from different parts of India, my repertoire of Hindi flavors and dialects grew and added dimension to my native fluency. Casual, formal, colloquial, and regional ... Hindi is a language with incredible variety and localization. Through this blog, I will help you learn Hindi through conversations, vocabulary, colloquialisms, and glimpses of Indian culture. आओ, मिलकर हिंदी सीखते हैं। (Aao, milkar Hindi seekhte hain!) Come, let's learn Hindi together.