Picture the scene: you’re driving along the road and minding your own business, when all of a sudden you see something moving out of the corner of your eye.
Not just any something though; pulling your car over to look out of the window, you spot a ginormous alligator sliding alongside the grassy verge just metres away from you.
As terrifying as that might sound for the majority of us, for those in Florida this is simply a regular occurrence – as one woman found out recently when she saw a gator making its way into a military base.
You can watch what happened below:
Christina Stewart spotted the alligator on Saturday (August 17) and immediately shared pictures and footage of the incident on her Facebook page.
Video of the incredible moment the huge reptile enters the military base shows the alligator climbing slowly up a fence before reaching the top and landing on the floor on the other side.
The alligator can then be seen moving slowly away from the fence and into the base, which according to the MailOnline was the Naval Air Station Jacksonville (NAS Jax).
As Christina filmed the reptile’s movements from the safety of her car, she states: ‘There it goes, over the fence, over the fence it went.’ A shocked child can then be heard exclaiming ‘Oh!’ in the background repeatedly before Christina laughs at something they say.
The Facebook post soon went viral, attracting more than 3.7k likes and the video a massive 304k views in the few short days since it was posted.
While one person thanked Christina for sharing the video, saying they had ‘never seen anything like this before with alligators,’ another simply wrote: ‘Gtfoh [get the fuck out of here] !!!! You saw this!!!!??? Ahhhh’ – which represents my feelings exactly.
Christina explained how she is usually ‘terrified’ of the reptiles but felt able to film it because she remained in her car at all times, saying the situation would only have been scary if she’d have been out in the open with the alligator.
She also told her followers she was able to witness what happened because someone had told her there was an alligator roaming around near the military base and so she went to check it out.
Although Christina described the experience as ‘so neat’ because she was able to ‘see it do its own thing’, this one’s going to have to be a hard pass from me, I’m afraid.
You might not have the luxury of that option if you’re planning on visiting Florida anytime soon though, because according to Visit Florida there are approximately 1.3 million alligators throughout the state which can be found anywhere from golf courses, to theme parks, to freshwater lakes.
Despite once being on the brink of extinction in the Sunshine State, conservation efforts were put in place to ensure their decline was reversed because the reptiles are actually an important part of the state’s ecosystem.
An example of their usefulness being the ‘gator holes’ that can be spotted around Florida, which as well as providing a place for alligators to collect food, also create places of refuge for fish, insects, turtles, snakes, and birds.
Which is obviously great and all, but I still doubt it would stop me from feeling terrified and running a mile if I was ever in close proximity with one.
If you have a story you want to tell send it to UNILAD via [email protected]
A Broadcast Journalism Masters graduate who went on to achieve an NCTJ level 3 Diploma in Journalism, Lucy has done stints at ITV, BBC Inside Out and Key 103. While working as a journalist for UNILAD, Lucy has reported on breaking news stories while also writing features about mental health, cervical screening awareness, and Little Mix (who she is unapologetically obsessed with).