Mac or PC—Does it have to be OR?

Awhile back, my husband finally got tired of me complaining about "this worthless piece of junk" while watching me threaten to throw my PC out the second story window of our home office.

One day he sent me a cute email that said, "An Apple a day keeps Bill away."

Huh? I had no idea what he meant until the FedEx guy pulled up that afternoon with my own Macbook. Then I knew—Bill meaning, "Bill Gates" and his infamous Windows trap.

So after at least ten years on my Windows bearing PC—and ten years of frustration over instability, slowness, and infuriating "Windows has encountered a problem and needs to shut down" messages, I was now the proud owner of a Mac.

Where to start? It probably wasn't the best decision to switch the night before I left for a business trip, only bringing my Mac with me. But as a savvy computer user, how hard could it be? Yep, other than not being able to utilize a single program or find any of my documents in front of the people I was trying to do a presentation for , it was a piece of cake.  I was smooth as 8 grit sandpaper. I suddenly felt like I had a mental handicap. Please, "friends," save your comments. 

I'll admit, after that incident, I was hesitant to  make the all-out change for awhile and kept a tight hold on my security blanket (a.k.a. PC) for when I needed to do something quickly or to feel empowered again. But all too soon I discovered that was a pain because I had to back up stuff twice to transfer it to my Mac. I got really confused as to what I had backed up and what I hadn't. I began to lose sanity.

For the first week (at least), I felt like someone who moved into someone else's home and had no idea where anything was. Add to that, the electricity was shut off in this home and I wandered around in the dark rooms, tripping over things and completely lost.

"Honey, I can't get anything done!" I whined to my husband. "And I really need Word for my work." He complied and installed Parallels AND Word on my Mac. Parallels is a program that allows you to run Windows simultaneously from your Mac so you can use applications that are windows-only. While there is a Word for Mac, it is costly and a bit out of date, so he just decided to install the Parallels for now.

Next, I couldn't edit my photos. Not only that, I couldn't seem to organize them or even find them easily. "If I only had my old photo program so I could edit the photos for my website again!" I moaned. So, once again, my husband promptly installed my favorite Windows optimizing program called Faststone on my Parallels.

I really TRIED to get used to Thunderbird for my mail application. But I guess after using Microsoft Outlook for so long, I was SO at home there. Besides, we couldn't get my distribution mail groups to import and I didn't want to retype 700+ addresses. "PLEEEEEASE, can't I go back to Outlook somehow?" I begged and clawed at his pant leg. And so, he reluctantly installed Outlook on my Parallels. It took him half a day to get it all set up right. Just how do these people get by who aren't techno-geeks (or married to one), I ask? I would never have figured it all out.

I guess all this is to say that now, I'm wondering why I got a Mac in the first place since I'm running Windows anyhow. I'm using all my old favorite Windows programs and still getting the "Microsoft has encountered a problem and needs to shut down" messages. It's pretty ironic and so far, I'm not really using too many Mac features. I suppose it will be nice for the many projector presentations I will be doing with the great program called Keynote, and it is faster and more stable, but was it worth the extra $500 over the cost of a new PC? I guess only time will tell.

Update two weeks later: I nixed all my windows programs (including parallels) and "committed" to my Mac. I did end up getting Word for Mac, and that helped my transition immensely. Now, switching to a Mac has been the best thing I've ever done. I LOVE my Mac and I would never go back! 

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Posted in categories: Just for Fun | Snapshots from Julie's Life