Things are much better now. It's a start, and I'm happy to have even that chance to try and reclaim lost ground and possibly go further.
As for the rambling tirade in the comments...well, that made it even harder. Just do me a favor, and drop it. Say nothing more about it.
I'm not hated, and that's good. And I have the chance to turn an acquaintence into a friend.
My day ends on a good note. G'night all.