You've watched the movie, now read the book. Gary Allen – the 56-year-old Californian man who has attended the opening of five Apple Stores in America with his son Devin, 16 – has published an online diary of his experience queuing outside Japan's Ginza Apple Store on the day it opened.

Gary and Devin were the first in line when the doors opened on November 30 – having spent 28 hours standing in the rain.

The two Californians were not the only people to spend the night in front of the store. According to Gary, 12 others spent a cold and wet night queuing – one group of die-hard Mac fans even had a handy electrically-powered heater.

Gary reports that by 8am "there were 192 persons in line, extending about 30-35 feet past the construction overhang", and within an hour the crowd had grown to 705 "extending past two intersections along the Ginza".

Describing the moment his son entered the store, Gary says: "It was the most energetic and exciting welcome in the history of Apple's retail stores! The chanting, yelling and applause from the Apple employees was deafening!"

He continues: "Devin ran the length of the store, giving the employees high fives, and we then both stood and applauded as those in line behind us followed – with the roar continuing."

Gary told Wired about his Apple Store hobby: "My wife doesn't quite understand the fascination. I try to explain to her it's a social experience. It's a fun thing. But Tokyo in the rain. She was mystified by that."

A self-confessed Apple Store expert, Gary has discovered a number of facts about the stores. He said: "The stores are completely standardized, a store in Florida is exactly the same as a store in Chicago."

And, according to Gary, Apple uses a big-brother-style video-monitoring system to automatically count the number of customers who enter the store, and to document their behaviour once inside.