It was like a huge rock concert.
People were lining up endlessly (in rain).
At the top of the line were Gary and Devin from IfoAppleStore.com; they flew all the way from San Francisco to stand In Front Of Apple Store (therefore, IFOAppleStore).
Gary told me about 15 people spent the night together IFO Apple Store; he seem to have been enjoying the 'togetherness' there and passing out some souvenirs to his comrades.
About ten minutes before the grand opening, Eiko Harada, the president of Apple Japan came out from the store and was enjoying the amazing view (of endless line in Ginza). Some other Apple staff came out with his 17" PowerBook with iSight and was showing that endless line to Steve Jobs somewhere abroad (some said he is in New Zealand right now).
Three minutes before ten, a big cheer broke out from the store and they suddenly started to let people into the store.
Big scream and shouts from the line and huge applause from the staffs inside the store.
Usually, when a new store opens in Japan, the clerks would welcome the customers by bowing. It is especially so in Ginza.
But this was not the case at Apple Store. The store stuffs were welcoming the customers with applause, cheers and high fives ;-)
It was a scene of a great excitement. I have seen some grand openings of new stores (on TVs, etc.) but no other opening showed this kind of excitement.
It may look very strange for a grand opening of a store -- especially for a computer store. But everybody there seemed happy, the clerks, the customers, the VIP and other Apple staffs were enjoying that special moment and everyone could tell that from people's face. Actually, it sort of reminded me of the grand opening of Tokyo Disneyland.
Before noon, some Apple staff were saying way over 5000 people seem to have lined up. The line wen as far as Yaesu Exit of Tokyo Station almost 1 km away from Apple Store; it would take almost twenty minutes walk just to reach to the end of the line.
Maybe Apple should have invited the officials from the Guiness. I talked with clerks from some other stores around but none have seen such long line ever. Many people believed it was the line for the big year-end lotto; many people believes you have better chance of winning the big prize if you buy the lotto in Ginza. Some were saying to me that it must be the recession that makes people form such a long line for a lotto ;-) well, the truth is, people were lining up to get into a computer store.
Of course, it is different from any other computer stores you might have ever seen, it may be closer to a Disneyland.
More about today's Apple Store Ginza, Grand Opening later. When I am through with serious condition (of delayed work).
This article wasn't proof read (as always). If you find any serious errors, just comment ;-)