Well, I can show my face in public again. Today I finally got the hammock up. And... in the weird way that my world turns, things worked out perfectly.
Yes the first post, the one I broke, was in the "perfect spot" for a post, but once the new one was in the ground I realized that I'd avoided a pretty huge and equally humiliating error. The new post is another 6 inches back from the tree, behind the first post hole- with a few inches of clearance for the trailer to pass it on it's way through the backyard to it's parking space.
I hung the hammock from the chains on either end of it's neatly tied ropes. It's a huge hammock... part of the issue was trying to find a big enough space to put the freaking thing... I watched it swaying gently, high off the ground, surprised again at how big the hammock was, then slid myself onto it...
And sat on the ground.
Brand-spanking-new hammock has a lot of stretch to it's unused ropes.
Not to fear though, all was not lost! I just had to hang the hammock on the first ring rather than on one of the chain links. BUT.
If that first post hadn't broken, the distance between the tree and post would have been just slightly too close, and no amount of adjustments would have made that hammock swing freely. I'd be napping on the ground.
Yay for stupid mistakes!
*Now it hangs at dog-nose-height... this makes Ruebendog very very happy. I napped and he brought me little twigs, his toys and pieces of bark from his current favourite log... all things that he deposited on me while I slept.