El Chino’s Ring (Bodega Stories)

El Chino’s ring. (AMARIS CASTILLO/Bodega Stories)

On El Chino’s wrinkled left hand is a worn, gold ring given to him by his señora — his wife. In the center is the image of a somber Jesus Christ wearing a crown of thorns.

El Chino’s wife gave him the ring in 2004, nearly a decade after they moved to the U.S. from Cuba. One of his daughters also gave him a chain with Jesus Christ’s image — and he’s got another one that’s too big.

“We’re Christians,” the 84-year-old said. “We always have Jesus’ spirit in our hearts, but I like to have him not only in my heart, but on my hand — and on my neck.”

El Chino said he doesn’t want to have God with him in just one place.

“The only one who can get you out of anything,” he said, “is Jesus Christ.”


Originally published at bodegastories.com on December 5, 2014.