Gabriel Garcia Marquez at last journeys home

John Otis in the Houston Chronicle:

311xinlinegalleryWhen a passenger train crawled into the station bringing Gabriel Garcia Marquez back to his hometown for the first time in 24 years, tears welled up in the Colombian writer’s eyes.

So many well-wishers showed up at the white-washed terminal in Aracataca — the setting for the surreal village of Macondo in his epic novel One Hundred Years of Solitude — that police officers struggled to clear a path for him. Everywhere the Nobel Prize-winning author paraded under overcast skies in a horse-drawn carriage, people chanted his nickname, breaking it into two distinct syllables, “Ga-bo! Ga-bo! Ga-bo!”

But the full-throated welcome for the man people here reverently call “El Nobel” also may prove to be a final farewell.

Now a silver-haired 80-year-old who was diagnosed with lymphatic cancer in 1999, Garcia Marquez is clearly slowing down. Although friends say he continues to write for two or three hours a day, it’s uncertain when he’ll finish his next book, the second part of a planned three-volume memoir.

More here.  [Thanks to Ruchira Paul.]