Ping Pong at Shen Mao
It’s not often you get a Friday evening in September when it’s 20 degrees outside. I’d just left my last customer and was finding my way through the Aarhus streets enjoying the sights of so many people outdoors sitting and enjoying the weather with friends and family, having a great time together. I was off at around 8 pm and I rode back home to get rid of my bag and get a fresh change of clothes. I’d arranged to go see a friend who I know is always up for a good time.
We were sitting on the grass outside his place, enjoying the last of the day’s sun with a glass of wine while playing backgammon. We always play Backgammon together, but after a few rounds, we were not able to decide the winner. Instead of discussing who played the best, we both knew how to settle the score. We would go to the Ping Pong bar “Shen Mao” to show everyone who’s best.
We put the game away and went up to his apartment. It was time to prepare for tonight’s battle – the dining table was transformed into a small ping pong table and the empty bottle of wine was a stand-in for the net.
I will describe “Shen Mao” as a trashed underground night club in an old raw basement with some of the best hip-hop/urban music beating out loud from the big speakers hanging all over the walls. Happy people dancing on a small and crowded dance floor. The best thing, however, is that you can play “around the world” ping-pong with the other guests. The last two players standing end up in a final, where the first one to gain 3 points wins the round. Another table is located outdoors and is used during summer – and also this Friday night – to play Beer Pong.
This unique place in Aarhus is not very obvious, so to visit, you have to know where you’re going. If you go down to the Aarhus River, you have to find one of the smaller bridges crossing the river underneath the bigger “Skt. Clemens” bridge. At the end you will be faced with an old wall without any windows and just a simple door with a small sign, telling you how lucky you are to find a whole different world in a small basement well hidden in Aarhus.
By the way, who do you think won the match at ”Shen Mao”? ;-)