Tales about the general question of luck and fate can be found in numerous variants in the repertory of fairy tales of all European nations, including those from Turkey to the Far East and Japan. The variant on the theme of ‘money versus chance’ is documented in a similar version from Spain and catalogued as a separate type of fairy tale (AaTh 946D: ). The version ‘O baxtalo molivi’ [The Lucky Lead] by Tomás Cristo, a storyteller from the community of the Colombian Kalderash Kalderaš: (Rom, as they call themselves), was recorded in Bogota in 2001; it is told in the language variant of this community. The parable gives a clear answer: if chance or fate are involved, any object – even if it seems insignificant – can bring luck.
In the dialect of this storyteller, it is striking that the central vowels influenced by Romanian (Romanian ă -> Romanes ê and î) are no longer present (thus for “house” there is kher instead of khêr – 00:47/00:48). Under the influence of Colombian Spanish, the sounds ‘ź’ and ‘ž’ are pronounced ‘dj’, while in most of other Kalderash dialects, they remain as two different sounds; the same applies to ‘ć’ and ‘č’, which sound the same without any differentiation in the narrator’s dialect, and the sounds ‘š’ and ‘ś’ are pronounced ‘ss’ (for example, śavale -> ssavale – ‘boys’, at 00:03/00:04, or manuš -> manuss – ‘human being’, at 00:30/00:31). These developments can be traced back to the influence of Colombian Spanish. However, links of this dialect with Russia can still be recognised in certain words borrowed from the Russian language (paraxodurya – “ships”, from the Russian парохо́д / parakhod at 02:21/02:22).
The recording was made in an informal, everyday domestic setting. Thus, in the background the sound of workers (banging) can be heard as well as the twittering of birds (for example, from 01:15 onwards).
Fennesz-Juhasz, Christiane; Cech, Petra; Heinschink, Mozes F.; Halwachs, Dieter W. (ed.). 2012. Lang ist der Tag, kurz die Nacht. Märchen und Erzählungen der Kalderaš / Baro o djes, cîni e rjat. Paramiča le Kaldêrašengê. Klagenfurt: Drava Verlag (Transkript und deutsche Übersetzung / transkripto taj njamcicka translacija / transcript and German translation: pp. 314–17)
Aarne, Antti; Thompson, Stith. 1961. The Types of the Folktale. A Classification and Bibliography (= FF Communications LXXV). Helsinki: Suomalainen Tiedeakatemia.