The facade is white. As white the aura of the artist today, what seems to be a common appearance among celebrities. They shine, or so they want to make them see, that's why they call them stars. The house where she lived before she became the famous woman she is, has at the entrance an arch and a barred door. There is an inscription on the top: SAGITTARIUS 86 - 135. Above, a plaque with a number “202″ and just behind that wall, the access door to which, during a good time of her adolescence, was the room of the singer Barranquilla.
The site is located in a neighborhood of citrus nature. It's called El Limoncito. The apartment occupied by the Mebarak family is on the second floor of this apartment house. At that time, the façade was brown. There, the artist wrote what would later become her first single “Magia”. He was just 14 years old and was taking his first steps in the music industry. The construction stands out for its simplicity. It's one more house on Sagittarius Street. On the stairs seen from the outside, the young artist sat with her guitar and sang whatever came to mind.
Shakira Isabel Mebarak Ripoll is now 45 years old. She is the daughter of William Mebarak Chadid, an American of Lebanese origin who came to Colombia at an early age. Nidia del Carmen Ripoll Torrado is her mother, a Colombian of Spanish descent. At the age of eight, the artist wrote her first song “Your dark glasses”. He wrote it to his father. He always wore glasses of this color as a sign of mourning for the death of one of his children, as a result of his previous relationship. There were eight children she had.
Around that time, William declared bankruptcy and the young woman had to emigrate to the United States to live with other family members in Los Angeles. After a while, on his return to Barranquilla, he discovered that several of his parents' possessions had been sold. The house looked empty. “In my childhood head, that was the end of the world,” he once said. That episode marked her for life and she set out to help others when she had the opportunity.
As a child she was told that she could not sing, that her vibrato was too strong. A music teacher, at his school, told him that he sounded like a goat. That kept her from giving up until she got anything she wanted. Now look at her, famous, surrounded by luxury, living in Barcelona with her family. Where is Shakira most appreciated? In Colombia he is criticized, exhibited, imposed on him. Is that what you do with the stars? We look up at the sky and rebuke them for not being closer to us, for shining so bright and leaving us down here.
The house in Barranquilla is today a space, like a synagogue or a monastery, for its fans to feel closer to the artist's origin. They visit the city with the intention of stepping on that street and standing in front of the white façade, fervent before a figure with curly hair and moving hips, cousin of beauty queens, descended from Catalans and Lebanese; the woman with the vibrato too tall, the Colombian who speaks with accents of the world, the one who dazzled García Márquez in a while, and the one that today has one of the leaders of Spanish football in love to the core. Shakira, the star of Barranquilla.
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