“Where are you going?” our young neighbor Annika asked me as I walked alone down the block toward the playground. “To play ping pong,” I replied. She looked puzzled, so I swatted an imaginary ball with an invisible paddle, and she said “Ah! Tisch tennis! Oh, can we go too, Mummy?” she asked, looking up at her mother. Having just returned from an evening walk, her mother said, “No dear, we’re going in now,” and so my neighbors went in and I continued on to join my family at the communal ping pong table in the spielplatz at the end of our street.
There are two tables and they are quite popular, but on this Friday night they were both open, and M and C were already playing. E put on the rollerblades I brought her from the flat, and she rolled around a bit before disappearing into the playground; I sat on the metal gate and waited my turn. Continue reading