By Abby Fisher
I’ve been cold the last three months. This cruel Wisconsin winter has bested every one of my attempts at warmth. No matter how many cups of coffee I drink or how many sweaters I layer, heat evades me. I have resigned myself to a semi-frozen state until spring. To be clear, my defeatist weather attitude really only applies to my corporeal self. Lately, my metaphysical body has been prostrate on a hammock somewhere deep within the Caribbean isles. Nobel Prize winning author Gabriel García Márquez has transported me to lush jungles and steamy port villages with his classic novel Love in the Time of Cholera.
An epidemic may not seem like a wonderful harbinger of passion, but after reading Love in the Time of Cholera I feel myself yearning for a bout of small pox to add just a dash of dark romanticism to my love affairs. Personally though, I wouldn’t trade my current love life for any of Márquez’s character’s relationships, even if it meant that I would be in the heat of the Caribbean (and that’s saying A LOT). Florentino Ariza finds himself madly in love with Fermina Daza, and it seems that she returns his affections…at first. They exchange a barrage of childish love letters and Fermina eventually accepts Florentino’s marriage proposal. Her acceptance proves false though, and she eventually marries a wealthy doctor to Florentino’s dismay. He spends the next fifty years nursing his unrequited love, never quite managing to suppress his feelings for Fermina.
I understand that true love is worth the wait, but my patience is strained if the Starbucks line is a little too long. Fifty years seems like an incredible amount of time, but perhaps when you find true love, time ceases to exist the way you and I might perceive it. All I know is that the ending of Love in the Time of Cholera is truly one of the most poetic and beautiful culminations of any love story I have ever read. It is well worth the wait. As Valentine’s Day approaches, delve into Love in the Time of Cholera for a timeless love story that may just make you reevaluate your concept of love entirely.