Re: My new toy.
It sounds like you boarched.
You can rig a rope step to aid in getting aboard. Probably don't need or want a real ladder.
I think a motor is a bad idea, they don't like to get wet. Just sail up wind of the pier, drop your sail and either ghost in down wind or get the oar out and paddle. With a single oar, sculling is more effective than rowing.
Sounds like a fun day. Any sailing school worth its salt would have had you capsized on day one, just after the classroom portion. I was taught to get up on the centerboard and then slither up on and into the boat just as the mast is coming out of the water. I don't think I could do that now at my age.
Dinghys capsize, so anything you carry must be able to withstand a dunking.