I'm also waiting for D7000 to come back in stock. I want to start learning and shooting ASAP though. I would like to be a decent photographer by the time all my summer trips start. I'm on the fence and might just get a D5100 since it has the same sensor and will produce the same quality pictures. I do like that LCD screen on top of the D7000 and the extra focus points. Those are the only things that I would miss. But maybe I wouldn't since I don't know how the D5100 would compare with the D7000 as far as focusing goes.
I want to start enjoying photography. I don't want to play the wait game since there is always something around the corner. I can always upgrade.
It's really frustrating to wait months for Nikon to get their cameras production up. I see all the Canon cameras in stock. Do they only have one small factory? All their lenses I see reviewed are made in China, which didn't get hit by the tsunami and most of the affordable ones are out of stock. And as I type this D5100 is now also out of stock everywhere. I might end up getting a Canon if this keeps up. April is the absolute latest I want to get a camera. If it ends up that they're purposely producing bare minimum because of upcoming models that would really turn me off from Nikon. Just like what they did to the D700 with a sudden production stop.