Hurricane Fausto and the Cottonwoods

37 … A storm hits, a tree falls, man removes tree and repaves street…

trees fall in Alameda, Alamos, Sonora, Mexico. Photo by Anders Tomlinson.

An old cottonwood trees was uprooted by a summer storm.

Hurricane Fausto, in 1996, uprooted a giant cottonwood tree in the Alameda. There was minor damage elsewhere, but nothing life threatening or forcing people from their homes. In the aftermath men quickly began to cut the tree into large sections. The tree was directly exposed to the winds from the west.

cutting tree in Alameda, Alamos, Sonora, Mexico.

One damaging aspect from Fausto, one big cleanup for man.

Where does one start to remove a fallen tree? One moves it from the street so traffic can flow again and then one begins to cut it up into smaller pieces: one cut, two cuts, three cuts, four, and … The significance of this photo series is it demonstrates how Alamos continues to be what it is today: build, repair, rebuild, remodel, redecorate, repair, rebuild and…

moving tree by hand in the Alameda, Alamos, Sonora, Mexico.  Photo by Anders Tomlinson.

Simple tools and strong backs take on a heavy task.

Man has moved large objects for thousands of years with the understood laws of physics and tools made from available materials. For a brief moment i saw men building pyramids in Egypt, laying out Stonehenge and erecting monuments on Easter Island. It is part of our DNA.

repaving street, Alamos, Sonora, Mexico.  Photo by Anders Tomlinson.

The tree is gone, removed section by section. Time to repave the street.

Rebuilding has begun. The missing tree will be memorialized by the new bricks in its place surrounded by weather, oil and rubber stained bricks. Hurricane Norbert, 2008, was one for the history book. It took out all of the Alameda’s remaining cottonwoods. I received a note from Beverly Krucek including this information, “The Alameda has been completely redone….the basketball court removed and a poplar tree lined esplanade built in….antique green benches surround the whole area and it makes a wonderful eye “rest” in the middle of town. The aforementioned basketball court has been moved to a Sports Arena at the entrance of town which also includes a soccer field, baseball, tennis courts and a proposed swimming pool. The next step is to create some sort of recreation center.” Beverly Krucek is involved with the local Álamos History Club which meets most Thursdays fall through spring. And life goes on in Álamos, Sonora, Mexico: The flood of 1770, the hurricane of 2008, the… and it goes on.

An occasional summer storm floods three arroyos in Álamos with mountain runoff.

Summer is the rainy season. Occasional tropical storms, remnant of hurricanes, come in from the Sea of Cortez to the west. This is the morning after a storm hit the region hard the previous evening.

And Then the Storm Came

The summer rains are here, the sweet night air cools warm bodies bringing relief and contemplation. The purity and hope of laughing young couples, alone with each other, drenched to the bone, clinging wet clothes, make their way home late at night splashing and dancing in cobblestone puddles. Above, the heavens explode, a cannonade of thunder rumbles across silhouetted mountain ridges backlit by fantastic lightening. It is time to go to asleep under one sheet in the cool of a warm night. And then the big storm, remnants of a tropical typhoon, arrived. In an instant the sky turned angry dark, the air became colder and a deafening wind shrieked through the trees. It rained and continuously howled from late afternoon until just before dawn. In the morning, stunned town folk came out and watched from a safe distance the fast running rivers that are normally dry arroyos. Over the coming days waters receded, children played in cool shallow pools and rock men filled their trucks with fresh sand. Photos and editing by Anders Tomlinson.
Music from “Camino Songs” by SonicAtomics.

This is a Blessed Season for a Multitude of Reasons.

In mid-afternoon the air pressure begins to drop and a stiff wind sweeps the valley from the west, a storm is coming. Night falls and showers start. We go from the Plaza to the Alameda and back. The following day the sun comes out and then is covered by clouds. Kids play and men work gathering sand in the arroyos. A summer day can be complex in its textures and atmospheres.

To see more Álamos Journal pages.

To return Home.

©2013 Anders Tomlinson, all rights reserved.

Both comments and pings are currently closed.