Gabriel García Márquez and Colombia share a true love story that continues to this day, even beyond death.
If we want to trace its origins, we must return to 6 March 1927. On that day, García Márquez was born in Aracataca, a small town that soon made an appearance in his novels as Macondo. As he says:
I wanted to leave a poetic record of the world of my childhood, which took place in a very sad and big house, with a sister who ate dirt and a grandmother who foresaw the future, and numerous relatives with the same names who never made much distinction between happiness and dementiaGabriel García Márquez
Cartagena de Indias
However, Aracataca is not the only colombian city to appear in his novels. Cartagena de Indias is the backdrop of the wonderful novels El amor en los tiempos del cólera and Del amor y otros demonios.
All the way to Sweden
In many ways, Colombia shaped Márquez’s storytelling. The Nobel academy explained that he deserved the prize «for his novels and short stories, in which the fantastic and the realistic are combined in a richly composed world of imagination, reflecting a continent’s life and conflicts.”
Indeed, the author reiterated his love for his land by collecting the Nobel dressed in liqui liqui and accompanied by cumbia and vallenato.
Back to Bogotá
And Colombians didn’t forget this gesture. Years later, when one of his books was stolen at a book fair in Bogotá, the colombian police went out of their way to make sure it was promptly recovered. This was highly unusual for police in the country and shows the gratitude Colombians have towards Marquez. If you’d like to hear more about this incredible story, check out Radio Ambulante’s podcast:
Did you know about Gabriel García Márquez and Colombia? Would you like to read his books? Let us know in the comments below!