Glad you are back in business! Thought it would be the tie-outs as the material is much tougher than it looks.
Lots of good grommet info on the above-mentioned thread from BPL. I'm diggin' the pole mod! Also, you're right about ease of repair - I recommend a small patch of tape as a preventative in the high-risk areas.
Please report back w/more results! Nice tarp.
-- Funny Money
Love 'em while you got 'em