Valley Overseas: The City of Love or The City of PDA?

Paris: the city of light, the city of love, the city of…PDA? In this beautiful city, romance is soaring all throughout the outside air, the metro, the cafés and anywhere else you may find yourself.

Even if you’re not in love à Paris, you can’t help but feel a romantic essence draped over your shoulders. It may sound touching, but be prepared for this delightful feeling to go away.

You’re probably wondering — what’s so wrong with this? Love is constantly being sought out by people all around the world. It’s not only sweet and magical, it’s all we need, according to Mr. John Lennon.

But after living in Paris for even just a couple days, the sparkling nature of watching others make-out in public starts to fade. It not only just fades, but it becomes slightly unbearable if you aren’t used to seeing extreme amounts of touching on a daily basis.

For starters, is it too much to ask to stand in a public area without having a couple next to you peck-kiss every other word over a span of ten minutes? In this instance, hold back the urge to clear your throat on maximum noise level because they will glare at you.

PDA does not only prevail in broad daylight, but, luckily, also during your daily metro rides. Do not be surprised to have a couple across from you be literally intertwined. Your knees are touching theirs, yet that does not stop them from having their legs crossed over each other’s, their arms draped over one other’s chests, and appearing to be sniffing or licking necks, faces, you name it.

Growing up in the States has taught us to keep certain things private, including our outward affection for others. By no means are Americans allergic to human contact, but everything in small doses is generally appreciated. Casual hand holding or a romantic kiss in the appropriate setting never does any harm.

My advice? Don’t gawk. If you want to seem even the slightest bit Parisian, the best thing to do is to act natural and pretend as if you don’t notice it. Yes, even if the noise of their lips smacking is louder than a dumpster truck collecting your garbage at 7 a.m., ignore it.

On the other hand, maybe Americans need to learn from the French and express our love more openly. If not, then it’s best to simply accept cultural differences and appreciate that there is more love than hate in this enchanting city!