EFEBy Ricardo Maldonado Rozo. Cartagena, Colombia

The life and death of Nobel Prize winning novelist Gabriel García Márquez were recalled by his son Rodrigo García Barcha on the first day of the Hay Festival in Cartagena on Thursday.

In a conversation with writer Juan Gabriel Vasquez, García Barcha revived the memories that served him to write his book "Gabo y Mercedes: Una Despedida" ("A Farewell to Gabo and Mercedes," 2021), which he was encouraged to publish after the death of his mother Mercedes Barcha in August 2020.

"Like my mother, my dad had a firm belief that our family life should be strictly private. As children we were made to enforce that rule over and over again, but we are not children any more. Adult children perhaps, but not children," he said.

In his book, he wrote that on Apr. 17, 2014, "a bird entered and apparently crashed into the glass of the room and fell dead on the chair where Gabo sits. Immediately, the friends, the employees of the house were divided. Some said this is a good omen, others said no."

"A few hours later Gabo died and in the afternoon a friend who knew nothing about the bird wrote to tell us: 'He is dying on Holy Thursday; Úrsula Iguarán (a character from García Márquez's famous book "One Hundred Years of Solitude") also died on Holy Thursday,'" he said.