On Saturday night, Bea Long’s driver, Ding Dong, sent her a text message: “If I no needed can go home? I think tabernacle not feel well.” This was a puzzler. Tabernacle? I’ll give you one guess what I thought the translation was and it sounded rather scandalous, a little too much information. Was this something Bea really needed to know? Sheesh. Talk about crossing cultural barriers.

In an event, Ding Dong was sent home to heal his tabernacle. At the going away party later that night, sandwiched in conversation between Sexy Mormon and Sarah Sugarbabe, a well-heeled Jew from Manhattan, it occurred to me that tabernacles were exactly what those two religious groups have in common and if that was the case, maybe there was an alternate meaning?

Sunday morning Bea Long gathered her courage and asked Ding Dong what “tabernacle” meant. Ding Dong whipped out his electronic translator and entered the Chinese character and up popped: body, person, tabernacle. Why did he choose tabernacle? she inquired.

“I pick the longest one,” he replied.

I’m upgrading today. If a body is a temple, why not a tabernacle? Linguistically speaking, at least four cultures, apparently including the Chinese, believe you should treat your body as holy space. Although I am back to polluting my body with bread, I’ve done some heavy lifting this week with Sammy Ayochok, a.k.a. “The Package”, to compensate and ward off paralytic moving stress. My tabernacle not feel so good either.



Filed under Friends, Misunderstandings, Moving, People

10 responses to “Tabernacle

  1. mood ring momma

    Seriously hysterical. Best laugh of the day.

  2. Winnie

    I think I am suffering from tabernacle envy – mine is disintegrating rapidly and everywhere I look the surrounding tabernacles seem far better off. I am seriously thinking of asking for a new one for my birthday. Please take good care of yours, (tabernacle that is, not birthday).

  3. I love it. From now on I will say “my body is my tabernacle.”

  4. Winnie, happy Birthday. I am having trouble getting my act together to call you. S

  5. MCV


  6. Just called to say I love you

  7. Just Called to say I care

  8. MCV

    Expat, how is your tabernacle holding up this week? You and your family and your move are ever on my mind. I’m thinking about and praying for a smooth move. Looking forward to the start of summer–PARTY!

  9. I am hoping that your kids are getting through the good bye times. You too. Kisses to all of you.

  10. I hope that you will give us a short China sendoff from the blog. It would be fitting. I guess you do not have even time for that. Love to you all.

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