Cartegena today - same as yesterday

Cartegena today - same as yesterday

Yesterday I finished a great book, Love in the Time of Cholora, by Gabriel García Marquez, a Colombian author best known for his epic novel, 100 Years of Solitude, an amazing story. I started reading this love story before I went to Colombia, then during my trip while sunbathing on a beach next to the town in which the story is based, Cartegena. And I finally finished it yesterday, while sitting in the sun on one of my last “free” days. (I´m including some photos of Cartegena for inspiration!)

Love in the Time of Cholera

Love in the Time of Cholera

I am not a hard-core reader. I don’t typically manage to read more than a novel every month or two, aside from all the random magazine articles, newspaper snippets, online stories and blogs, of course. But I really love getting sucked into an amazing novel. I love how after reading intensely for hours and hours you feel different, as if your life and thoughts aren’t really yours but somehow belong to the characters that have become so present in your brain. And so you end-up almost believing you live among these other people, in their world and time.

I really enjoy reading novels (fiction or non-fiction) based in the place where I am visiting, living or traveling. A great story always adds an extra level of understanding to my experience and brings the place to life in a unique, dreamy manner. On my trip in Asia, I started reading non-fiction memoirs of people who lived in each country. It was a fabulous way of learning about history, culture, society, as well as about the country itself.

 And so it was that I read this complicated love story at a time when I was traveling to Colombia, exploring a new culture and landscape, as well as venturing inward to discover and understand the place of love inside myself. And I have to say, I learned a lot through the ideas and feelings and experiences lived by the characters in the book.

Balcony in Cartegena, Colombia

Balcony in Cartegena, Colombia

While some might find this book a bit slow and complicated – due to the extremely detailed descriptions of everything, I found it magical. And I came away feeling calmer and wiser about love and relationships, as if I had matured and grown along with the characters in the story. So funny how that happens.

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