On this Saturday September 25th 2010, it was the start of an ordinary day at the Rockbusters headquarters:
(Archive Picture taken during daylight)
Here at Rockbusters we have one mission: to search and destroy all kind of rocks, asteroids, asteroids deluxe, asterocks, meteors or even blasteroids.
This day at 5 am the members were using their ultra sophisticated computers to check frantically the www in search of some more asteroids that could threaten our earth.
Suddenly an alert appeared on their ebay-ionic radars!
Original Asteroids from 1979 spotted in Pool (Dorset), UK.
The Rockbusters Signal was automatically send to call Pascal my N°1 wingman.
Our security cameras catched him entering the Rockbusters HQ...
6.30 am, perfect timing... the blankets and some special tools were already prepared in case of such an emergency, so let's go!
Estimated lenght of the trip 1000km on the roads + 60km on the sea.
Estimated total time of the trip 18h.
But first some Rock Blasting Music!
Ooops... damn, I'm not cut for this century...
A few Night Driver games later...
...we arrive miraculously at Calais in France.
It is now 8.44 am and my 6th sense tells me we are heading in the right direction.
Pascal is loading the weapons while we wait for the ferry.
Once we're on board, it's now Burger Time! Sausage time! Beans time! whatever greasy thing time! ...a true "breakfast for the winners".
(We were planning to visit the burger king at noon as we always do when we are on a mission but because of this heavily heavy meal we had to wait until the evening... burps).
It's now game time because even a soldier has to relax sometimes... even by the simple way of shooting ninjas with a bright pink gun for instance.
Then I heard Pascal screaming "Blue screen! Blue screen of death!".
Wow, how cool is that? a BSoD on Segarally3. Clearly the highlight of this gameroom.
My usually loyal wingman tried to attract me into the Dark Side by making me play Cops 'n Robbers. But rest assured: I resisted.
Damn, my 6th sense is overworking again, we must be close...
During the cruise the crew came to congratulate us on all the good work Rockbusters is doing and thanked us for protecting the earth like we do on a daily basis.
At the arrival we were pulled over (probably because of that stupid rock'n roll looking van) and asked a lot of question.
True story: the guy from the customs asked me several times "How comes that you don't own a pac-man?".
He even said he knew the game asteroids and then again several times "So you're collecting and you don't own a pac-man?"
... I wish, mate, so for my next roadtrip I'll try to get one, just to be completely in order with THE LAW.
It's now 10am local time. Super nice weather and 3h of driving ahead of us until we reach checkpoint 4: loading the asteroids cab!
My very first 100% dedicated cab! I can't wait, I can't wait, I can't...
wooot, oh that's true I forgot about the official 1h15 traffic jam that's included in the full package of every real arcade roadtrip.
Maybe this time the slowness is because we got a bit crazy and decided to drive on the wrong side of the road (and everybody followed us)?
Lucky for us a rockbuster friend opened the road a bit for us.
We stopped for a few minutes just to grab the official arcade roadtrip drink and The Guardian for my girlfriend (she used to live in UK)...
Aaah, amazing things you can do for love: driving 1000km in a day just to bring back a newspaper for your fiancee
Do I really need that... mmmh decision, decision...
2.45pm local time, we're at the sellers place!
It's mainly a pool and snookers renting/selling place.
They used to have arcade games for sale/rent but Gareth from PSL explained that nobody is playing with them in pubs anymore.
Slots/gambling machines are still hot though, eurrrgh
We wait 5 minutes in the showroom while Gareth is preparing THE machine in their warehouse and then...
Bam! Boom! Wooohoo, it's there in all its 1979 beauty! fully functionnal... just waiting for my high score to burn it's screen a little bit more :-)
Employees of the company were regularly playing on it but it had'nt been rented in ages.
As SPL were moving premises, this old lady had to leave (with me!).
Loading time now! Wow Gareth is fast with that cart. He moves the 95 kilos like if it was an empty cardboard box...
Wait it isn't, or is it?
Gary (with whom I made the deal) had also offered me to check a DK cab.
Sounds interesting but in reality it was a plain white cab with nothing original on it except for the marquee...
...so instead I picked up a busted change machine just in case SuperUlly would want it (and he did!).
Gareth said: "For a Rockbuster, of course it's free of charge".
Time to drive back to Dover.
I'm so happy I keep on looking back at the trunk while driving.
A bit dangerous in Pascal's opinion...
Also did I mention it's my first time driving on the right side of the road?
Oh, relax you all..
A quick stop at the gas station made us aware of the fact that tabloids were (again) talking about a Rockbuster (me in this case).
It's now 7pm local time.
Burger Time at last!
We had to wait so long for our stomach to want more food again after that crazy breakfast but it was worth the wait.
Yum Yum Yum! Our Energy level bars are increasing.
No problem with the customs this time (it's easier to pass the border with a loaded van than with an empty one obviously).
Time for the brave soldiers to celebrate: Huge beers time + Huge games time!
Note that Pascal played cops'n robbers again and WON 10£. He wants one at home now to use as a moneybox (seriously if you have one for sale...).
Found a very good book by one of our colleague on the boat:
Of course the crew members came to congratulate us because rockbusters, blablabla:
OK, we're a tad tired after the dancing games, especially against 17 years old girls that we were trying to impress
but we now have to drive 2h15 to my place and most of all: unload the Asteroids.
We are not afraid of anything because we are the mighty rockbusters AND ALSO because we are the:
OH30am Belgian time: arrival at my place. Perfect timing for the Rockbusters team again...
...and the rain miraculously stopped!!!
So we should get to work quickly.
After a good night sleep, it's time for me to: unload the change machine and take some pics of it for Ully,
put back those damns seats in the vito,
plug and test the machine and teach our newest member how to blast asteroids.
See, it's a great game for the whole family... but wait...
Oh no, something terrible happened to us during the night!
Someone "rocked" us!
(cab in it's temporary location)
The job of a real Rockbuster never really ends, so we now have to chase this old wizard who did this to our faces...
...and take control of the mother of all asteroids cabs: the mysterious and evil golden cab...
Go, Rockbusters, go!
blast! blast! blast!