‘There’ll be no turkey’: Sombre Thanksgiving for Atlantic Canadians hit hard by Fiona


Darlene Hughes will flip 65 on Sunday, nevertheless it gained’t be fairly the birthday — or the Thanksgiving — she had hoped for.

Hughes had deliberate a small occasion at her Charlottetown residence with family and friends to have a good time her age milestone and the vacation — however that was earlier than the highly effective wind gusts from post-tropical storm Fiona tore down energy traces throughout the province.

Instead, she stated in an interview Thursday, she’ll be spending the weekend coping with out mild or warmth and cleansing pals’ properties for some additional money. And for the primary time, she and her husband won’t be having fun with a Thanksgiving meal.

“Well, Thanksgiving,” she stated, her voice breaking with emotion, “I always cook a turkey. And it’s always my birthday weekend. And there’ll be no turkey.”

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It’s a narrative that’s taking part in out throughout Atlantic Canada: the vacation weekend has been dampened for 1000’s in Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia who’re nonetheless with out energy — virtually two weeks since Fiona hit on Sept. 24. About 4,000 properties and companies in Nova Scotia spent their thirteenth day with out energy on Thursday, whereas virtually 9,000 properties and companies had been nonetheless at nighttime in P.E.I.

Hughes stated she and her husband even have to deal with the mess the storm left on their property. “We’re too old for this right now — lugging branches and lifting branches and fixing fences. We’ve lost all our fences in the back.”

On Thursday morning, Hughes’s husband known as a lodge to e book a desk for Saturday evening to allow them to have a good time her birthday, however the associated fee was daunting. “We can’t afford it,” she stated. “But he put it on his credit card and he said, ‘We’ll deal with it later.’”

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The couple are on a hard and fast earnings and have spent most of their cash on meals and gasoline for the reason that storm. They needed to throw out virtually all the things of their fridge and may’t cook dinner at residence.

“We ate breakfast one day, and it was $44 to have breakfast, and that was just a breakfast like a bacon and eggs,” she stated.

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“I got a coffee and it was almost $5 for a coffee. It was $4.25 for a medium coffee. Like really? Like, that’s just crazy.”

She paused.

“I’d rather drink vodka,” she stated with amusing.

Click to play video: 'Nova Scotians on day 11 with no power after Fiona at wits end'

Nova Scotians on day 11 with no energy after Fiona at wits finish

Nova Scotians on day 11 with no energy after Fiona at wits finish

About 350 kilometres to the east, in Sydney, N.S., Robert Grafilo stated he expects to have some kind of Thanksgiving dinner with the chums in whose residence he and his household live. Maybe even “a few drinks,” he added.

But Thanksgiving dinner will include a aspect of hysteria as a result of Grafilo, a 45-year-old retail employee who grew up within the Philippines, must discover a new residence after the duplex wherein he lived was crushed by a maple tree through the storm.

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After the constructing was evacuated, Grafilo, his spouse and their two boys, aged 10 and three, spent a part of their financial savings on lodges for every week. When the ability returned in components of town, shut pals throughout the small Filipino neighborhood took the couple into their residence within the Whitney Pier neighbourhood.

“What a time for this holiday (Thanksgiving) to come, as we are looking for a home. It would be normal, if this storm hadn’t happened,” Grafilo stated.

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Jhoy Agbada stated she and her husband and their two kids wished to assist the Grafilos by giving them a short lived place to remain. “I know that though they are smiling, they are heartbroken inside,” she stated.

“It’s like I just want them to feel that they’re not alone in this kind of situation …. We will celebrate it and have a simple gathering for Thanksgiving. We should still celebrate it because we should be thankful they are safe.”

‘I’m simply fed up’

A number of kilometres away, within the Ashby neighbourhood of downtown Sydney, Sona Sudharsan; his associate, Sandra Sudharsan; and their toddler boy are additionally planning a Thanksgiving meal, although a tree remains to be leaning in opposition to the house they lease.

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They’ll be giving thanks for the return of energy, for the members of town’s Indian neighborhood and for the Salvation Army, which delivered meals through the darkish durations following the storm.

“After a rough few weeks, we need some relaxation,” Sona Sudharsan stated.

Grafilo stated he’s grateful for family and friends who dropped off meals and clothes throughout his household’s sojourn in lodges. “We’re thankful we’re still alive, safe and sound. That’s what matters.”

Hughes stated she’s grateful for her husband and her well being.

“Well, I guess I shouldn’t be doing so much complaining,” she stated. “And I’m not hungry. And I’m not cold right now. But I’m fed up. I’m just fed up.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first revealed Oct. 7, 2022.

© 2022 The Canadian Press


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