Tyler Cowen at Marginal Revolution takes on the daunting task of deciding where in the world to live if he had to exile himself and had $10M to live on. He rules out small countries, Mediterranean ones, very cold ones, and English-speaking ones (not interesting enough for him, but if they were, he likes London and Toronto). He dismisses “the Spanish speaking world” because they stay up too late in Buenos Aires, and Mexico City is too polluted. And Asia is too riddled with people.
His choices: Berlin or Cologne (Köln), “the latter for its central location in Europe.” Cologne’s not far from Belgium, the Netherlands, France, the U.K., even Scandinavia, relatively speaking.
I like his thinking on Cologne. Something a little more Mediterranean would probably suit me fine, too, maybe Barcelona or Valencia. I’d be farther away from northern Europe but closer to northern Africa.
In addition to Cologne, I’d consider Bern (near France, Italy and Germany) or Munich (near Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Czech Republic) for their European centrality and because they are livable cities in their own right.
I think my next trip overseas will have to be to Germany … Thinking about the North Sea, the Baltic Sea, Bavaria, Saxony, Hannover, and the Black Forest (1/3 of Germany is forest!) is making me kind of giddy. Not sure what I’d eat other than pastry but at least there would be beer!