When you’re given a site by Peace Corps, you never know what you’re going to get. Even when you are in country, you don’t know. As an example, take our site. It’s about 70,000 – 100,000 people, depending how/where you count. We have two major supermarkets, fresh fruits and vegetables available every day, lots of shops. Pretty much most things that you can get in Morocco, you can get here any day of the week. Our apartment is fairly modern, nice tiles, hot water, WiFi, western toilet, shower, etc. The streets and the markets are busy. We see a lot of people during the day, and get a lot of people staring at us because not everyone knows who we are – this town is just too big for that.
Now, look at our nearest Peace Corps neighbor. Her site is only about 8 km from our house; you can ride your bike there, no problem. She lives in a small dwar (village) with only about 100 houses total. She has a mud house (all houses are mud houses) with two rooms; the kitchen is outside (as is the outhouse). She does have electricity but no running water (no one does), so she goes to the well to get water, bring it back, and then boil it. The town is surrounded by agricultural fields. There’s no market but there is one store – a guy’s house, it’s open upon request (aka, knock on the guy’s door and see if he has whatever it is you were hoping to get). EVERYONE knows the volunteer here. Everyone probably knew about her before she even got there. She has no anonymity, it’s more like a really big family. It’s amazing how close her site is, yet it feels worlds away….
Also, there are baby animals!