It looks like when it installed i3 it removed plasma - thanks to the log file. I was able to reinstall it with the excellent advice you provided and now I am logged in! Wow.
I thought a window manager would work on top a desktop? I wanted something that would work with plasma, not in place of it. I tried kwin but none of the shortcuts worked (mostly I think b/c I don’t know what the meta key is). I guess i3 is not for me.
In fact I have no business using Manjaro at all. I’m going to have to install Ubuntu or Debian which is more at my level.
I think you can use i3 with Plasma … but it depends on how you do it (I havent tried).
The Meta key is usually the ‘windows’ key.
I am not sure any of the above has anything to do with Manjaro/Arch … well … the ease of recovery probably was thanks to superior package management . But Plasma is going to work like Plasma in whatever case. And the Meta key will still be the Meta key.
Manjaro happens to offer a rather wide range of DEs and WMs if Plasma is not your style.