6th of MAY: KAKAVA, HEDERLEZI & DJURDJEVDAN
Planet Earth– On the 6th of May Romani People are celebrating basically the same event but calling it with different names: Kakava for the Roma from Turkey, Hederlezi for the Muslim Roma in the Balkan, Djurdjevdan for the orthodox and catholic Roma in the Balkans. I remember that an old woman told me an interesting story…
“…look, this is really an old history, my grandmother told to me that her grandmother told it to her… Long time ago, Mother Earth, Mother Water and Father Fire decided to give as present the Spring to the Roma. The Roma were the population designed by the gods to travel around the world and teach the emotions to the gadje. But as the gadje do not have emotions, the mission was really difficult. In many cases Roma had to escape from the community where they were arriving due to the inhospitality of the gadje. In other cases, the community of gage that welcomed Roma, after some years instead of learning emotions they enslaved the Roma or they built concentration camps where they put the Roma to live. So, for this reasons, Mother Earth, Mother Water and Father Fire started to discuss why the gadje do not want to learn emotions. At that moment, on our planet there were just two seasons, the summer and the winter. The transition from the two seasons was so radical that the Gods understood it was the main obstacle for the gadje to learn emotions.
The Gods decided to support the mission of Roma and to create a new season that will announce and prepare the gadje to receive the emotions. But the Gods must to deal with their own bureaucracy… pass through the Parliament of Gods, then the Council of Gods, and then to the local council of semi-Gods. The process was so slow that it can take something like 1000 years. Mother Earth was so afraid that she decided to create the Spring of Earth. In order to make it secret, Mother Earth went in some part of the world, today known as Egypt. She found a cave were to stay, and from a red flower she gave the birth of Kakava, the most beautiful woman that the universe ever saw. So beautiful that her long blond hair, warm as the sun, shining like the gold, touched the ground. Her eyes were made with the blue of the ocean, and everything that was death and she touched, it born in a new life. But Kakava was born sick, and she did not had enough power to fight, at the same time, with Summer and Winter. Mother Earth afraid that Winter and Summer will kill her daughter Kakava went immediately to ask help to Mother Water and Father Fire. They went to the cave and they decided to give to Kakava two riders that will protect her. Father Fire created Hizir, a brown Rider with the capacity to create the fire from nothing. His function was to protect Kakava during the cold winter.
Mother Water generated Ilyas, a warrior Princess, so beautiful with her friends and so terrible at the same time with her enemies. She had the incredible capacity to walk on the water. Her mission was to protect Kakava, in the transition between the new Spring and the Summer, and give her a little bit of water in that big desert. All together they went to pick-up Kakava from her cave, next to the sea in Egypt. On their way they were surprised to see a lot of Roma coming out with different flowers from the cave and the gadje coming to the Roma asking for the flowers. But the Pharaoh was allergic to the flowers, and he immediately mobilized is army to search the origin of that absurd miracle and kill Kakava. Next to the caves, the Gods, Hizir and Ilyas faced the Pharaoh’s army that was following Kakava. Hizir and Ilyas got panicked and started to search Kakava everywhere. Ilyas put Hizir on her back and start to run across the Sea searching Kakava. While following them, Pharaoh’s army with all his soldiers got drowned in the sea. Hizir and Ilyas arrived in the Balkans, they are still searching everywhere Kakava. By the way, Hizir and Ilyas got married, and they are well known and celebrated in the region with the name of Hederlezi and Djurdjevdan. Kakava is still in the cave. As she is sick she is sleeping all the year and she wakes up just on the 6th of May, when is her birthday.
That is the only moment when Kakava leave her cave and stay the all the day long next to the sea looking for her protectors. In the other side of the Sea, on the 6th of May Hizir and Ilyas are coming back every year to the point where they arrived in Balkans to search for Kakava. They can see Kakava in the other parts of the sea, but they are not able to recognize her, so they restart their research. At the same time Kakava goes back to sleep in her cave waiting for her protectors. On the 6th of May, Roma are still going to the cave next to the sea to celebrate Kakava. Each year Kakava doesn’t forget to give to the Roma the flowers to support their mission to teach the emotions to the gadje. In fact, the spring moment is the only collective time when the gadje go toward Roma with happiness. And this is, more or less, how the Roma created the Spring.”