Back home, tired out post-work-journey...and after three hours with kind and diligent people from Apple tech support, we determined the only way back to any kind of usable computer was to erase my hard drive and reinstall my OS.
I'm in the process of reinstalling applications and drivers, so will be limping for the next couple of days.
My last back-up?
Not so long ago as to make this tragic, but long enough ago to make me feel rather stupid. Thank goodness I've not yet gotten to that "first 10,000 photographs" Cartier-Bresson says are one's worst.
So, if you've not:
Do back up your files, now, today, please.
For those Mac users out there, please think carefully before using FileVault. The encryption made it impossible for tech support to do certain things they might otherwise have used to preserve my files.
I'll be limping a bit in email as well -- if you'd like me to be able to email you directly, please drop me a line so I have your e-address (yes, everything is gone, including that.) Now, off to check comments, since I've been disconnected since Thursday. And I will wander by everyone's blog this weekend -- y'all are the best supportive, smart, and caring blog-friends I could wish for.