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Biggles

Feb 6, 2004, 2:26 PM

Post #1 of 29 (5544 views)

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Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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We're planning to visit the Progresso/Merida area for potential property in one of the smaller beach villages. Are there any gringo/ex-pat associations in that area? We love the idea of living on the beach and still be near larger cities for supplies, but I think hubby would need to have a touch of home, too.

Any info on the Progresso area, too, would be much appreciated!



Biggles



Marie Boitano

Mar 11, 2004, 1:04 PM

Post #2 of 29 (5485 views)

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Re: [Biggles] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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In Merida there is an English speakers association of some sort. I am thinking it is for women and they are involved with public service projects. People of various nationalities belong, the common thread is that everyone speaks English. Someone at the English Language Library or a Public Affairs officer at the U.S. Consulate would be able to give leads. Many of the beach homes are for vacation use only with few full time residents. Understand about the wind that covers everything with sand for 2-3 blocks back from the beach.

Mucha suerte, Marie Boitano


Marie Boitano

Mar 11, 2004, 3:26 PM

Post #3 of 29 (5472 views)

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Re: [Biggles] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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While going for a walk another source for ex/pat information surfaced. Here are 2 Merida area real estate sites that may be able to give advice: www.jensyucatan.com and www.miguelsmexico.com. I used to have friends living in the area but no longer.

Marie Boitano


Biggles

Mar 11, 2004, 7:12 PM

Post #4 of 29 (5457 views)

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Re: [Marie Boitano] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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Marie,

Thanks, that was exactly the type of info that I was looking for. I've been on those two sites quite a few times (dreaming?) but didn't know about the winds. That may rule out the beach after all, or at least on the Yucatan. Oh well, we're going to check out Merida, too.

If you have any other suggestions, I'd be glad (and grateful) to hear them.

Cheri


Kip


Mar 12, 2004, 6:11 AM

Post #5 of 29 (5444 views)

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Re: [Marie Boitano] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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Hi Marie,

I just wanted to thank you for posting those wonderful sites. I knew nothing about the Merida/Campeche area and had no idea that is was so beautiful.

Kip
kip


sacc3850

Mar 12, 2004, 12:16 PM

Post #6 of 29 (5423 views)

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Re: [Biggles] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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March 12, 2004 2:30 PM EST

Hola, Biggles! I just spent over six weeks during two trips to the Yucatan Peninsula in July and November-December, 2003. Stayed in Merida, spent a week on the Costa Maya, at xcalak, Quintana Roo, on the Caribe. Also, spent four days at Campeche. First, BUY these two books for complete information on what you intend to do: "Yucatan Peninsula", by Moon Handbooks, and the Hunter Travel Guide titled "Adventure Guide to the Yucatan, Cancun & Cozumel" written by Bruce and June Concord. These people are experienced name travel writers who have much practical information for you and your husband. Second, the BEST on-line real estate site is operated by "Casa Blanca" Real Estate located in Merida. One warning. Those beach places on the Gulf survived a terrible hurricane in November, 2002. I went to Chixculub in December, 2003. Out of season or not, the place did not impress me, and I went for the same reason that you all have in mine. And some of the waterfront restaurants were heavily damaged, and still not repaired. And this happened all along that coast. Also, if you do buy on the Gulf, make sure first that your cottage is at least a couple of hundred yards back from the tide's high water mark, or it may be destroyed by another storm of that ferocity. Progresso is a pleasannt town on the Gulf, but the beach is not much to write home about. Also, if you intend to buy, do not go to a "abogado"(lawyer), who will grab a fee, and refer you to a "publico notario", which is an approved, highly qualified, and experienced real estate lawyer, NOT a real estate agent or "abogado". In Merida, I suggest the "Posada Toledo", which puts you in a nicely restored colonial mansion, at the corners of 57th and 58th streets in the "Centro", near EVERYTHING. The people there are "muy amable", very friendly and helpful. English is spoken, and ask for one of the five third floor rooms, which are LARGE, quiet, and only cost $ 34 USD daily. For the culinary experience of your life, eat at "Alberto's Continental", located at 57th and 64th streets. A visit to Celestun on the Gulf is worth a shot to see the flamingos. For Casa Blanca Real Estate's website, go the the MexicoConnected Home Page, scroll down the left side to where it says "2500 Mexican Websites", go to the bottom where you can enter a search, and enter "yucatan", there are a few real estate sites on the first page, but go to page two and you will see Casa Blanca. Latch onto their "Yucatan" listings, go to the bottom where you will see a beauty, three bedrooms, two baths, with pool and servants quarters. For only $ 98,900, that may sole both your problems. And you still are only 30 mniutes from the Gulf. Lastly, go to Campeche. Two hours and $ 10 USD per, and you will eat the best seafood of your life. Lovely, CLEAN, Mexican town of about 350,000, and much more laid back than Merida, which I like also, but much cleaner and higher standard of living than most. No beach, but there is a great one about 40 minutes away. You will LOVE it, and that lovely town may please you BOTH. B uen suerte! sacc3850 a/k/a "C;larencio"


Marie Boitano

Mar 12, 2004, 12:18 PM

Post #7 of 29 (5421 views)

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Re: [Biggles] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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Further thoughts. My friends lived near Tamanche on the road to Progreso. In many outlying areas there is no mail, phone or garbage service. You will see real estate ads mentioning satellite tv/cell phones. Some beach areas also lack these services. Cushy shoes are needed for the cement/tile floors, mildew inhibitor for the wall paint and natural air flow between the cool and warm sides of the home. Open closets and shelves reduse mildew and you can place a decorative screen in front. By all means rent before buying unless you have lived in the tropics before. Merida has the nightly music and dance programs which are a big plus for the community. I love Campeche but doubt whether there is much of an English speaking community. That's it for now. In October I may practice a week of tropical work with the Jimmy Carter blitz build in Vera Cruz followed by a trip to the Yucatan.

Hasta luego, Marie Boitano


Kip


Mar 12, 2004, 3:23 PM

Post #8 of 29 (5411 views)

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Re: [Marie Boitano] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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Lots of great information! We've been kind of considering Mazatlan. Are the climates simliar or are there differences? Tempertures? Humidity? I hadn't even considered the Yucatan until I looked at the realtors websites. It really is beautiful.

Kip
kip


Marie Boitano

Mar 12, 2004, 7:55 PM

Post #9 of 29 (5398 views)

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Re: [Kip] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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Yes, beautiful and HOT. Although I live on the west coast of the USA I have never visited the same area in Mexico. On the Pacific coast you get the westerlies, an onshore breeze. You also have real soil for gardening. The Yucatan was sea bottom and there are pockets of soil and much limestone right at the surface. In Merida a usual nighttime temperature is about 70, thus hammocks are breezy and comfortable for sleeping. The attraction for me is the Mayan culture and archeological sites. Because of the long distances from the central Mexico production areas, basic purchases cost more. Merida is away from the coastal breezes but has numerous cultural offerings. Driving is more relaxed en las afueras as the volume of traffic is low. You have to experience the heat of April and May. I visit in November, after the rains and before the tourists and prefer a climate where I feel healthy and energized. To live in a tropical latitude at sea level without fans or ac turned on much of the time is difficult for some. Do visit and sit on the stones , watch the clouds and take time to get a feel for the place. Find your comfort zone.

Hasta la proxima, Marie Boitano


Biggles

Mar 13, 2004, 5:24 AM

Post #10 of 29 (5384 views)

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Re: [Marie Boitano] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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Wow, some really good info...many thanks to you both! I never even considered the humidity factor--it's bad enough here in Texas. I've seen the casablanca website and couldn't seem to stop drooling at many of the properties listed. It's nice to see a "thumbs up" on it since a website is no guarantee of the integrity of the person behind it. There are 3 really good sites that I've seen so far...Miguel's Mexico does the Merida area (can't think of the URL at the moment), http://www.jensyucatan.com and http://www.casablancayucatan.com do, too. The area looks gorgeous and the prices just make me want to cry. I think the best advice given, though, is to rent first and check out all of the potential areas before we leap in.

We're taking a quick trip down in September (week in Guadalajara/Lake Chapala and then a week in Merida) to get hubby to see that Mexico is so much more than bad western movies (starring the ever-present bandito and "ladies" of the cantina). He's never been there before but he's been showing a strong interest. Any suggestions on things that would catch an aging Brit's attention would be most welcomed! He's a bit limited on too much walking (bad ankle injury in a road accident) but, other than that, he's pretty open.

Muchas gracias a todas! (one day I'll learn how to do spanish punctuation on this #$%^&*()_ computer!)

Cheri


Papirex


Mar 13, 2004, 8:32 AM

Post #11 of 29 (5370 views)

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Re: [Biggles] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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Cheri, I can’t provide any info about Progresso-Merida, but I can tell you the easy way to use Spanish Punctuation with your computer. Open Control panel, click on the keyboard icon, and then click on the “input locales” tab. Click on the “add” button, and then click on the arrow for the drop down list at the top and select “Spanish (Mexico)". Click OK.

This puts a small icon marked “EN” on your taskbar. When you click on it, you may choose between the English, or Spanish keyboards. The last language you used will remain the default. When using the Spanish keyboard, all the letters of the English alphabet and the period and comma remain the same. The semicolon changes to the Ñ, and about half of the other punctuation marks are changed/moved.

To identify the new Spanish keyboard layout, I opened a document and struck each of the keys in both upper and lower case. I drew a rough chart of the keys that had changed functions.

Optionally, you can mark an ivory colored keyboard with the new punctuation markings with a very sharp pointed felt pen. The first time I did that, the markings wore off in a week. I marked them again, and covered them with little squares of Scotch Tape. That takes some patience. The new markings lasted for 4 years, and were still OK when I replaced that computer. If you do that, the keyboard ends up a little on the ugly side, but it is functional as hell.

With a black keyboard, like I have on my laptop, you’re out of luck as far as remarking the keys goes. I do a lot of hunting, and backspacing when typing in Spanish with my laptop.

I hope this helps, Rex


"The supreme happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved" - Victor Hugo

(This post was edited by RexC on Mar 13, 2004, 8:50 AM)


esperanza

Mar 13, 2004, 9:11 AM

Post #12 of 29 (5360 views)

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Re: [RexC] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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RexC, what OS are you using? I'm using a Dell system (purchased 2 years ago in Texas) with WindowsXP Home Edition, and all those gyrations aren't necessary. When I strike the apostrophe key followed by an a, e, i, o, or u, it automatically places the áccént where it should be. If I strike shift and the ~ key followed by the n, I automatically get the ñ. Should I need an umlaut, it's the apostrophe key followed by the u--ü. And, god forbid I should need a cedilla, it's the apostrophe followed by the c--ç.

When I used Windows 98, I did indeed have to do all that you describe. But no longer--life is much simpler now. I write extensively in Spanish and XP has saved me tons of time.




http://www.mexicocooks.typepad.com









Marie Boitano

Mar 13, 2004, 9:45 AM

Post #13 of 29 (5358 views)

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Re: [Biggles] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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The other real estate site I know of is www.mayanliving.com. You will notice overlapping and properties unique to each site. On Miguel's site under accomodations there is Luz en Yucatan. You get to choose your room rate. For me the Yucatan is all about walking so I can't address other interests. Do plan on spending Domingo en Merida. A schedule of events is posted as there is music offered all day at several venues along with dance, food stands and craftwork. Enjoy your visit. I am having no luck with the accent marks or in placing a~ over an n. Everything either preceeds or follows.

Hasta luego, Marie Boitano


Papirex


Mar 13, 2004, 10:59 AM

Post #14 of 29 (5352 views)

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Re: [esperanza] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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Hi Esperanza, We have three computers in our house. My wife has a 3 year old custom built desktop with a PCChips motherboard, and Windows 2000 Professional in Spanish in it. I have a 21/2 year old Dell Latitude laptop, it came with the W 2000 professional OS. I also have a 6 month old Texa desktop. Texa is a Mexican brand of computer. It came with the XP Professional OS, and Microsoft Office 2003, both in Spanish.

I used XP Pro in the desktop for three months. I hate it. While it has a few more bells and whistles than W2K does, it lacks the reliability of W2K Pro, and is not as user friendly, IMHO.

I finally formatted the hard drive, and loaded my W2K Pro, and Microsoft Office 2000 disks in English in it. I am more comfortable working in English, and I have been using W2K Pro for several years. To each his own, I just prefer W2K Pro to XP.

It is really no problem for me to select the Spanish keyboard, and begin typing a document. You only have to configure the keyboard once. The language icon is always on the taskbar after that. Judging from the way you have described using Spanish characters in XP, I think my way is probably an easier method. It is no problem for me to get ` è ¿ ? ¡ ! ^ º etc.

My old desktop came with W95 in it. I don’t remember if I enabled the Spanish keyboard in it before I upgraded it to W98 or not. I don’t remember if it is even possible to do it using W95. I had a previous laptop with W 98 in it also. I had enabled the Spanish keyboard in both of them, using W98.

Again, I say to each his own, I think that if a person doesn’t have XP, the way I have done it is probably the only way the Spanish keyboard can be configured to work in a computer using an English OS. I know there are methods of using several keystrokes to type Spanish characters also. That always seemed like a lot of bother to me.

Rex






"The supreme happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved" - Victor Hugo


sacc3850

Mar 13, 2004, 1:37 PM

Post #15 of 29 (5338 views)

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Re: [Biggles] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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March 13, 2004 4:15 PM EST

Hola, Biggles! If your "esposo"(husband) has a little age on him and a bad ankle, no fear. I have been gonig to Mexico since 1969, at least eleven trips, and the one in November-December, 2003, was the best. I am a 78 year old dude who had a total knee replacement on one knee in 2001. In July I went to Yucatan and Quintana Roo for sixteen days wiith my son, and we had a ball. I enjoyed it so much that I returned in November-December 2003, and spent a month on a bus tour of the states of Yucatan, Campeche, Tabasco, Chiapas, and ended up back in Yucatan. I too have a problem with walking and use a cane. BUT the big thing is that the Mexican bus system is so much superior to ours, that you need not rent a car, and the rates are ridiculously low. And there are new "Lujo" or luxury buses if you care to pay a bit more. Plus. in the cities, taxi fares averaged 20, 30, or 40 pesos, with the peso worth about 4 cents USD. So, why walk at all. Plus, if you cannot get enough people together to share a van to a site, get a taxi. Quote fares first. I did this to visit Edzna, the Mayan ruin outside of Campeche, and my own cab with driver, a Mayan half-breed, who also knew the site well indeed, and acted as my guide there only cost about $ 25 USD for three hours. Try that in California. If your husband goes to this part of Mexico only once, you will have to hold him back when he insists on returning frequently. But one of the best posts to your original query was the one that suggested that before you BUY, that you RENT. Rentals are so reasonable that they are well worth the cost, with no obligations, AND you both get a chance to see where you really want to settle. You will love Mexico. I have. sacc3850 a/k/a Clarencio


Marie Boitano

Mar 13, 2004, 2:30 PM

Post #16 of 29 (5333 views)

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Re: [Biggles] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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Just a couple more notes. By planning a vacation during the rainy season more trees will be in bloom and there will be clouds of butterflies. Be sure to travel in a rural area for an opportunity to see them. Since you know Spanish there is a little book you may want to buy in Merida. In the 1930's a woman collected Mayan stories and wrote the collection in English. It was translated and is part of a project to publish Mayan tales. The series is la Biblioteca Basica del Mayab by Maldonado Editores, Yucatan, Mexico. This particular volume is, Los Pajaros Eran Diferentes Entonces. My edition was published in 1992. Each chapter tells how a particular bird got its song, plumage and so on, including the fire fly. It is a delight. I used the control panel route to install the Spanish keyboard but have not yet practiced.

Marie Boitano


sfmacaws


Mar 13, 2004, 3:28 PM

Post #17 of 29 (5328 views)

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Re: [esperanza] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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Hi Esperanza,

I also use XP (the Pro version) on my laptop and it doesn't work as yours does. I'm wondering if you have a spanish version? I'm going to try Rex's control panel way as I've been unable to find any combo of keys that will work on this machine.

What do you do if you just want an apostrophe between 2 letters?


Jonna - Mérida, Yucatán




esperanza

Mar 13, 2004, 4:21 PM

Post #18 of 29 (5324 views)

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Re: [sfmacaws] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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Hi Jonna,

I brought my whole system from the USA and it's not Spanish-speaking in and of itself. But my keyboard does what I described earlier.

If I want a regular apostrophe, I strike the apostrophe and the space bar (if the next letter in sequence would be a vowel) in order not to have the accent over the vowel.

I would have to go back and look at the instruction book (aackkk) to see if I had to configure anything to get this keyboard to do this. I think I just discovered by accident that it does do it. Hmmm...now I have to drag out the instructions. If I find out that there's a way to configure it, I'll post it.




http://www.mexicocooks.typepad.com









Don


Mar 13, 2004, 8:16 PM

Post #19 of 29 (5311 views)

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Re: [sfmacaws] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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Check out this Website. Tells you how to put on the Spanish Accents marks using Windows XP. It worked on my laptop.

http://www.mc.maricopa.edu/...n/ACCENT%20MARKS.pdf


sfmacaws


Mar 14, 2004, 11:40 AM

Post #20 of 29 (5290 views)

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Re: [Don] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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Interesting. The technique for XP on that site didn't work on my XP Pro but I was able to add the language bar that lets me switch between english and spanish keyboards. It took some testing but I think I've found the accents.

Michoacán año

Now I have to practice switching back and forth easily.

Muchas gracias a todos por ayúdame.

Course, now I have no excuses left for my poor spanish.


Jonna - Mérida, Yucatán




Papirex


Mar 14, 2004, 1:46 PM

Post #21 of 29 (5281 views)

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Re: [sfmacaws] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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Jonna, One thing I forgot to mention is that for some symbols, you will need to press the ALT key on the right side of your keyboard. You will need to do this to copy the “at” @ symbol for instance.

You will need to experiment, several things like the backward slash, even the Euro symbol are accessed when pressing the ALT key on the right side of the keyboard, at the same time one of the other punctuation, or other symbol keys are pressed.

Try pressing the spacebar if nothing appears. Some symbols, like the umlaut, or accent mark only appear when the next letter, or the spacebar is used. With some symbol keys, using the right ALT key does not produce anything. You will find that some keys will have three functions when the right ALT key is used though.

With some Spanish language computers in Mexico, we have to press the right ALT key with the Q key to get the “at” @ key. The @ symbol is marked on the Q key on those keyboards.

Rex
"The supreme happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved" - Victor Hugo


sfmacaws


Mar 14, 2004, 1:58 PM

Post #22 of 29 (5279 views)

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Re: [RexC] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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Thanks Rex,

I've learned to find the @ key in many different places on spanish keyboards from using lots of different internet cafes while traveling.

The only complaint I have with using the control bar is that I have to use it. Switching from english to spanish for one or two words is kind of a pain. On my mac, I can add an accent by using a key combo while still within the english keyboard. I was hoping for something as simple on my pc... heh, I just realized what I said, who am I kidding! Anyway, at least I CAN do it now. Many thanks for that. I've also discovered that I have spanish spell checking and grammer checking in MS Word, hopefully it's more accurate than the english grammar checker.


Jonna - Mérida, Yucatán




Papirex


Mar 14, 2004, 2:15 PM

Post #23 of 29 (5277 views)

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Re: [sfmacaws] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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Jonna, Have you checked for any updates for Word? The grammar checker was miserable before I downloaded the latest update. Every time I would use a comma, it would be highlighted. When I ran the checker I would get the message, “comma, check usage” Wow, what a ton of information, how useful !!!

Since I installed the update, those stupid warnings have been eliminated. It’s pretty good now. If you haven’t checked for updates recently, open Word, click on Help, click on Office on the web, and click on check for updates. You can then click on your version of Word to see if there are any updates that you don’t have yet.

Rex
"The supreme happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved" - Victor Hugo


sfmacaws


Mar 14, 2004, 3:34 PM

Post #24 of 29 (5272 views)

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Re: [RexC] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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Not recently, I haven't. Good tip. I try to do all the updating and downloading when I'm in the US in the summer with a good cable connection. It's pretty painful to download much of anything (even pictures) on this phone line to prodigy.


Jonna - Mérida, Yucatán




Coppertino


Mar 14, 2004, 4:11 PM

Post #25 of 29 (5265 views)

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Re: [sfmacaws] Information on beach areas near Progresso/Merida needed

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Enough Keyboard talk. Just buy a Macintosh

Mac has offered all the accents, etc. since 1984 and with the English Keyboard. They also offer a little help program to select whatever you are looking for.

Coppertino
Coppertino

Pretty nice here in Puerto Aventuras, Mexico. Picture says it all.
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