If you could live abroad rent-free for a year, what place would you choose?
From the instant I saw Bruges, Belgium, I began to fantasize about moving into one of those 15th-century houses that hang out over the canals. I'd spend my mornings working on the great novel I'm going to write, and gazing at the boats and swans for inspiration. Afternoons would find me on my bicycle, navigating the cobblestoned streets. Is it possible to become fluent in Flemish in one year?
I'd choose Akureyri, Iceland's second-largest city. The seasonal contrasts of this Arctic port are astonishing. By summer, it's the city of the midnight sun, and in winter, the snow and ice showcase the landscape. Iceland is clean and safe, and the residents are friendly and helpful.
I would cross the Pacific to live on Chuuk, in Micronesia, a realm which has narrowly escaped the grip of our digital age. Once settled, I'd like to teach in a school while I learn the island's beautiful language and culture.
W. Jane Bignami
San Francisco, Calif.
I wanted to stay forever after visiting Pordenone, Italy, a picturesque town two hours south of the Cortina d'Ampezzo ski resort and a 40-minute train ride north of Venice. It has a wonderful market every Friday morning, where I got a taste of the real Italy.
Pembroke Pines, Fla.
I'd study French at the institute in Villefranche-sur-Mer, near Nice. It's a great little port city with amazing sunsets. From there, I would use the bus and train to explore the region.
I'd live on an uninhabited island somewhere in the South Pacific to relax for a year and live on coconuts and bananas. My only worry would be which to have for dinner--fish, crab, or lobster.
E. E. Aktay
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