Whilst killing a bit of time on the fateful day that I met up with TomLeeCee (to hand over Confidential Mission in a desparate attempt to ingratiate myself with the author of my favourite blog and get a foot in the door of the Yard), I happened to find myself in Manchester's famous oriental microcosm... Chinatown.
Rather tragically I began to muse over the similarities of said location and the virtual Hong Kong that I had spent so many hours, days and months in, playing my beloved Shenmue 2. I had 'the three gingers' with me and the biggest one caught the whistful look in my eye. He knew what was going through my mind and began to chuckle cynically, as I adopted my best Ryu Hazuki pose, turning up the collar of my brown leather jacket and slapping another blob of gel into my spikey black barnet.
As I furtively peeped down the alleyways for Lan Di's thugs, and checked my watch to make sure it wasn't 11 O' Clock (when I have to run home for bed and catch up on nine hours sleep no matter what I'm doing...) I happened to feel an unexpected attack. The littlest ginger was tugging on my sleeve and pointing towards a vending machine outside the Tomato Convenience store. Capsule toys! "Should I get one?" I mused, in a monotone American accent, whilst raising one eybrow pensively..."O.K.."
Very slowly I knelt and placed in my $5 HK into the machine... Damn! No Virtua Fighter Figures, no forklifts or crap dice. But there was large headed Marvel characters akin to the VF Kids in Shenmue and Hello Kitty crap that I could waste my money on. In order to replicate the 'thrill' of the game I bought one. It was shit.
Having nipped into an arcade for a quick game of Space Harrier, I decided I better hot foot it towards the allocated hostelry prearranged for the hand over of the first donation of Junk for the Yard. I bought a map for $10 HK and set off, pausing to admire a large chested ginger bird on a red motorbike that seemed to be giving me the eye...
Where's all this toss leading to I hear you ask? O.K. I'll get on with it... For it was then that I saw it... That familiar swirl that causes a rush of bood to my love muscle. For here in the closest place to Dobuita that I was ever going to get, was a Dreamcast mecca. A place I was sure would be an Aladdin's cave of rare Dreamcast games, sought after peripherals and associated 'lost' merchandise!!!
I walked in heart pounding, reaching into my pocket for the Phoenix Mirror that I was willing to trade for said goods...
Only to find... that it had stopped selling Dreamcast games years ago, specialising now in PS2 only... And like a sack of sloppy shit being emptied over my freshly shaven noggin I realised that I was not in Shenmue-Land at all, but in the festering bed-sore that is Manchester. Fuck.
Oh well, back home then to face rain, weasel faced scrotes on mountain bikes in Von Dutch caps and the sad realisation that life is well and truly a motherhumping bee-atch! And that's why we all need our little white boxes to escape into, as we draw our mould infested curtains, fire up a Pot Noodle and slurp on another premium strength lager before sloping off to a sweat stained mattress and closing our eyes until anothr grey day dawns.
Goodnight children wherever you are, until next time...