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Saturday, February 10, 2007

Good Question Senor Caiman!

In case you do not read the comments people leave here (which are often better than the post), Senor Caiman asked if that little post office off Alligator Alley is still there.

And to that I say - what crack you be smoking? NOTHING is on Alligator Alley (AKA I-75).

However, there is the smallest post office in America, located on Tamiami Trail, or as some call it US Highway 41. In a backwater place known as Ochopee. Or as the locals call it "where?". It can be found 30 miles east of Naples. This is also 70 miles west of Miami. Right around the intersection of US 41 and Florida SR 29. In the Big Cypress National Preserve.

Here is the post office as it was way back before digital cameras and color film. I think this photo was taken in 1986 or something. Back when if your computer operated faster than 6 mhz you were a super big computer nerd and probably got a lot of atomic wedgies.

Anyway, the original post office was part of a larger general store. But the store burned down a long time ago. So the post office was moved to the tool shed that was behind the store. It was later moved closer to the road, and that sign you see on the roof was so people did not go in there to crap, thinking it was an out house. It measures 7x8 feet. Actually 7 feet three inches x 8 feet four inches. Here is what the place looks like today.

Yes, this is a fully functional post office. Old school. I think the postage scales are not electronic, and everything is hand stamped. There is only one employee.

And here is the coolest part. UNLESS a friggin tour bus full of idiots who have never seen a post office is there, you are in and out of this place quickly.

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Blogger Victoria said...

That poor, poor post offic employee. I just hope he isn't claustrophobic.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

oh lord...there is really a person in there, processing mail? where the heck do they put it. is it up to fire code? is there an exit out the back? what if a fire breaks out at the front door, how will the person get out? i have a lot of questions about that doghouse/postoffice. it is just weird. thats all.

Blogger Matt said...

I'd love to meet the old lady who works in there. Jesus. My adopted town in Vermont has a post office just a bit bigger than that.

Blogger Senor Caiman said...

The Lazy,

My navigation skills are definitely not one of my strong points. At one point in my life I drove that route a lot but it was a long time ago. I thought it was kinda odd to have a baby post office in the middle of nowhere. Thanks for the update. PS the back of that building smells like urine.

Blogger The Lazy Iguana said...

Victoria - the clerk who works there supposedly loves the job. And for good reason! Ochopee is not a big place with tons of jobs. Working there is probably the best job is town.

Badoozie - less than 20 people supposedly live in Ochopee, so it is not like there is a lot of mail to process.

Matt - it is the smallest post office in the USA.

Caiman - Of course the back of the place smells like piss. There is no bathroom.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

yeah, really where does the employee go pee. that is against code. i'm turning them in for numerous violations. then i'm going to advocate for that to be mowed over and have a shopping mall built there

Blogger dddragon said...

Hmmm ... this could start a whole new type of posting ... finding the smallest of anything.

Blogger The Lazy Iguana said...

Badoozie - shopping mall? For who? The 11 people that live around there?

3D - The Ochopee Post Office is legendary. Stamp and post mark collectors seek the place out.


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