Some on Lennox Island 'back to Square 1' after lobster frozen for winter lost
Many in the community freeze lobster each week, to eat in the winter months
For Leslie Labobe, it was a long five days as he waited for power to be restored to his home in Lennox Island, P.E.I., following post-tropical storm Dorian.
"It gets pretty tiresome," Labobe said.
Like many on the Island, Labobe has to restock his nearly empty fridge, after losing his perishable food. But the bigger loss for Labobe is the lobster that he cooks and freezes each week — and planned to eat throughout the winter.
"I get about 25 lobster every week. So we're talking about four weeks, so probably well over 100 pounds," Labobe said.
Labobe is one of many on Lennox Island who get lobster from the First Nation community's food fishery — and are facing a loss of food in the wake of Dorian.
The food fishery is a non-commercial fishery for the community's own consumption.
Many lost food
While most customers on Lennox Island had their power restored on Tuesday — three days after the storm that knocked out power across much of the province — on Thursday afternoon, a handful of houses were still waiting.
Labobe said he's not the only one facing a big loss of food.
"By what I'm hearing in our community, everyone lost most of their deep freeze," Labobe said.
Band Coun. Richard Guimond spent much of the week checking in on those without power, and later in the week, fuelling generators for them.
He said he is "really concerned" about the food loss many are facing — and what that could mean for the winter months.
"There would be members here that probably lost quite a bit of lobster, frozen meats and stuff like that," he said.
"You know like when some people buy half a pig or half a cow or something like that. There's probably people in this community that had that loss."
Guimond said he expects the band council to assist people to cover some of the cost of food lost, though it won't be possible to replace everything.
'Back to Square 1'
The food fishery on Lennox Island is continuing into October. Guimond and Labobe are both glad there is still time to replace some of the lobster that was lost.
"I'll be picking up lobster on Monday and starting right back to Square 1 again," said Labobe.
And as he works on restocking his freezer, he's also thinking ahead, on how to avoid being in the same situation again.
"I think we're going to be planning on getting a generator by this fall."