NEW YORK — The nor'easter that stymied recovery efforts from Superstorm Sandy pulled away from New York and New Jersey Thursday, leaving hundreds of thousands of new people in darkness after a blanket of thick, wet snow snapped storm-weakened trees and downed power lines.
From Brooklyn to storm-battered sections of the Jersey shore and Connecticut, about 750,000 customers — more than 200,000 from the new storm — in the region were without power in temperatures near freezing, some living for days in the dark.
"We lost power last week, just got it back for a day or two, and now we lost it again," said John Monticello of Point Pleasant Beach, N.J. "Every day it's the same now: turn on the gas burner for heat. Instant coffee. Use the iPad to find out what's going on in the rest of the world."
But most were just grateful the new storm didn't bring a fresh round of devastation.
"For a home without power, it's great. It came through the storm just great," said Iliay Bardash, 61, a computer programmer on Staten Island without electricity since last week. "But things are not worse, and for that I am thankful."
Nearby, Vladimir Repnin emerged from his powerless home with a snow shovel in his hand, a cigarette in his mouth and a question from someone cut off from the outside world.
"Who won? Obama?" he asked.
He didn't like the answer.
"The Democrats ruined my business," he said, referring to his shuttered clothing manufacturing firm.
Unlike other holdouts who got by with generators or gas stoves, the 63-year-old from the Ukraine has been without power since Sandy brought eight feet of water through his door and his neighbor's deck into his yard. He tried to beat the cold Wednesday night by sleeping with his Yorkie Kuzya and cat Channel.