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Manhattan iPhone Watch: T minus 1.5 days

Thunderstorms overtake Manhattan as the line outside the Fifth Avenue Apple Store extends to 14 people.

'Camp iPhone' on a rainy Wednesday night
Caroline McCarthy/CNET Networks

On Wednesday, as predicted, the rain came. I must say I don't think I've sported this much Gore-Tex outside of hiking trips. Thunderstorms had been on the horizon for New York, and despite rampant rumors that Steve Jobs can control the weather, they still came. Around the 5th Avenue Apple Store, drainage isn't too good, so parts of the stone courtyard outside the Early Show studios were half an inch deep in water. (Note to self: don't wear flip-flops next time!)

But that didn't do anything to break up the line of enthusiasts waiting for the iPhone launch at 6 PM on Friday.

I hadn't dropped by the Apple Store this afternoon because I was busy talking into a box (there's my shameless self-promotion for the day). So when I showed up again after dark in the rain, the line that had been six people long 24 hours ago had now lengthened to 14. The male-female ratio is about 4:1, and just about everyone is somewhere in their 20s. Everyone was huddled under umbrellas, and thankfully, it looks as though there was plenty of rain gear around.

I'm also hearing that one guy in line knows how to get access to a shower in an apartment nearby, so things haven't been quite as, uh, pungent as they could be.