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Anthony (Tony) Athanas
Adjusting Well to Life in Canada

Time 0:01:44


TA: —it was—it was—exciting. I mean, after we got over the—the—the uncertainty it was, like, you know what, resolve yourself that this is (claps) where you’re going to be for the next little while, right. There’s no turning back so might as well make the best of it. And, I think—for us it was—my brother and I, because we went out together, quite a bit—it was um—started to be fun. Because we were seeing, um, fellow West Indians, um my—back when I had hair, my sister took us to one of her friends who is a barber. So we met other Trinidadians who have been up here, so they gave us tips on what to do, what to look for, you know, things like that. So it was um—yeah, it started to become—normalized, I guess, is what you’d call it. We weren’t feeling as much as outsiders anymore. We were adjusting well.

KB: So what types of tips would they have given you?

TA: Um, well, you know, just to—not look at—even though these people are strangers, um, don’t feel um any trepidation in just saying, Hi, or you know just, Hello, that sort of thing because you never know. My brother is more of an outgoing person than I am so he made a lot more friends by the time that first month was over—he made more friends than me. So through hanging with him I got to know his friends, so.


Anthony (Tony) Athanas was born in 1959 in Santa Flora, Trinidad and Tobago. Santa Flora was a town owned by an oil company and Tony’s father worked as an x-ray technician at the oil company’s medical centre. After graduation, Tony also began working for the oil company.

Tony’s family decided to immigrate to Canada after his father passed away in 1979. Tony’s older brother and sister had already immigrated to Canada a few years earlier and encouraged the rest of the family to join them. In August 1981, Tony, his mother and two younger siblings were able to immigrate under the sponsorship of his brother Patrick. The family settled in Brampton, Ontario.

At the time of the interview, Tony was working as a business analyst for Enbridge. He became a Canadian citizen in January 2012.

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