Who isn’t in love with the idea of Paris? Well, I assume that pretty much every romantic, but apparently the Japanese can take it a bit too far sometimes. I’ve never been to France myself, although I must admit I would really love to go back the old Paris, smoking a cigar and listening to jazz in a small yet lovely restaurant then maybe dance and laugh until the morning… but for now I’m stuck in cold grey England, with dirty pubs and drunk students 🙂
The difference between the idealistic view presented in the media about the city of light and the reality is the main cause of Paris syndrome. Characterised by acute anxiety, sweating, depersonalisation and dizziness, this condition occurs most often among Japanese tourists, who don’t seem to handle too well the contrast between their initial beliefs about the city and the reality.
Why the Japanese? Besides the main cause explained above, scientists believe that the syndrome is most prevalent among Japanese tourists because of the prominent cultural difference and the language barrier; the fatigue triggered by the urge to visit as much as possible might also be contributing to the weakening of the visitors’ psychological state.
I found this video online which is a small, but really good documentary (it’s much better than my blog, I recommend you to watch it) on Paris syndrome and it includes interviews with a few people who talk about their tourists experiences in Paris and about their opinion about the city:
Did any of you visit Paris? What did you think of it? Was it indeed so different than you expected?