When Fernão Mendes Pinto, reached Cosmim in Bhurma, he finds a small colony of catholics, being the result of inter-racial marriages operated by Portuguese soldiers and merchants.
As Luis de Camões wrote, himself an adventurer and a soldier, we spread ourselves with slashes of the sword and of love, therefore achieving the first genetic pool which begun in East Africa and went all the way to Japan.
In 2002 Joaquim Magalhães de Castro, an acquaintance of mine, sponsored by the Macau International Institute travelled to Bhurma in search of those Portuguese descendants, the Bayingyis of the Valley of Mu, and published a book of which the photographs are a small part of its contents.
In his quest, Joaquim Castro met the archbishop of Mandalay and learnt of the difficulties of communications.
In the Valley of the river Mu, Castro found full evidence in the 21st. century of those slashes of love that Camões spoke of.

Part of the book's cover showing a girl with evident European features, a luso-descendant and a catholic in a predominantly Buddhist country closed to the outside world by the military.
Note: Luso refers to the Lusitanians, the ancestors of the Portuguese, a term that means Portuguese.

The features of this man from the Mu River are very much of Portuguese origin, as they are quite similar to Portuguese India luso-descendants as well as from the Portuguese Settlement in Malaca.

This beautiful mother denotes more than evident features of some Portuguese women. Her features are definitely not Asian.

Different generations, but the genetic influence remains very recognizable.

Girls in church all denote a miscegenation that is moving for it is surviving for half a millennium.

This faithful old lady continues a religious tradition left by the Portuguese. It is of the utmost relevance to note that all these communities are aware of their origins and fiercely keep their catholic traditions and their different features from the rest of the Burmese people.

Father Anastasius Sun goes by boat to the church on the right for Sunday mass. He himself wears the white habit of the tropical missionaries. That is how they are used to see us, said the priest referring to his flock.

In many Buddhist temples nearby, the walls are covered with scenes of the Portuguese in Chinese junks with African sailors and Chinese pilots and a gun is perfectly recognizable in the left ship.
This is but a brief testimonial of the Bayingyi luso-descendents in today's Myanmar. The affection for the Portuguese remains in Myanmar, Thailand, Ceylon, Malaca, Portuguese India - Goa, Damão and Diu - Macau, Tanegashima,
It is somehow like a spell that cannot be explained through logic.