Congratulations on discovering python. It will serve you much better than php, or any other scripting language.
Skipping to the punch-line, you should dive into python before you dive in django: http://diveintopython.org/ You will have a very much more easy time if you learn how to debug a script in the shell (rather than running a program endless times with different print statements), use introspection, slice lists and basic OOP. I also learned php first, inorder to add a shopping cart onto my friend's website. However, I switched to this other scripting language, python, because it could do things php cant. For instance, my first project in python involved capturing keyboard input before windows heard about it. Then I kept discovering amazing things python can do that php cant. I helped write a non-sequential optical ray tracer in python. When it needed to be faster there were several libraries for writing C code directly in a pythonic syntax. Python has hooks into everything, like optical character recognition, electronic music sequeuencing/generation, serial port i/o. Gnucash, an opensource quicken like accounting package, has python bindings. when there were no decent free unRARing programs available, I discovered python could do it easily. And if you decide you need to use the parallel vector processeors of your nvida graphic card's onboard multicore GPU, there is a package for that: PyCuda. And they all weave together seamlessly. Django could use PyCuda in a custom form validation method to determine if an archived folder of pictures you have uploaded has an image of a car with a decipherable licence plate. Anyways, python is great, and by extension I expect Django is also (just learning it myself). good luck, Elliot