A Morning Stroll

Beep, beep, beep.

If I had a back-up alarm, it would be going off right now. My casual perambulation down the causeway path has just gone into a rather more-urgent reverse gear. Where the heck did that gator come from?

And that’s the more-or-less true-distance view after I backed up. Yikes.

I wasn’t seriously wondering where he came from: his angle of repose and wet hide indicated he had just walked out of the pond behind him. What I was wondering was why I hadn’t seen him sooner. But as other casual perambulators walked between him and me, ignoring my sputters and not asking what I was filming, I stopped wondering why: Dead still, he blended pretty well.

And then he stood up.

Join me on my morning stroll and catch the whole encounter (& more besides!) in the short (1:18) video, below. And if you like to take a coffee on your gentle walks, try Nature’s latte (Or should that be a cappuccino?): an all-natural concoction of pond water and pollen.


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14 Responses to A Morning Stroll

  1. John Whitman says:

    Isabel – having spent my teenage years hunting in the woods that bordered our farm, it never ceased to amaze me how something I was looking for in the distance could suddenly explode from almost under my feet. And how did I miss that??

    Movement is what catches the eye. Things lying dead still close by, even if they are big and ugly, can go unnoticed. Eventually I learned to look for things close at hand and then look further into the distance, and then move on.

    • Isabel Gibson says:

      John – Good safety advice. A birder in Arizona once told me that she figured birders were over-represented in the “bitten by a snake” category, because they weren’t usually checking what was near their feet. Snakes don’t like to be surprised…

  2. barbara carlson says:

    Walking in the woods is also treacherous — look up to avoid branches and you trip — look down and a branch scratches your face. I stay in town.

    • Isabel Gibson says:

      Barbara – 🙂 Stay alert! (Town hath its own dangers.)

      • barbara carlson says:

        Black ice, but not much of it this year. You didn’t miss winter this year, but we did. Esp. John who had so little of it to paint.

        • Isabel Gibson says:

          Barbara – That is too bad. At some point, it seems to me that snow (not my favourite) is, at least, better than the grunge of late-fall and early-spring.

  3. Your video is my first experience of seeing people so close to an alligator without a strong barrier between the critter and the folk. I cannot imagine why the people were so close and did not retreat. When I first saw gators in a pond sixty feet away, I beat a hasty exit to the car. Those beasts can run up to 30 mph!

    • Isabel Gibson says:

      Laurna – I think they can achieve that speed, but not maintain it for any distance. As one walker said to me – For the first 15 feet, they’re faster than you are. We were well within 15 feet. On one nature-type tour I did, I was told that adults are too big to be of interest, which is reassuring. Then you read about people attacked in Florida and feel slightly less assured.

      • barbara carlson says:

        I have also read that swimming in the Amazon is not to be subject to attack by piranhas as they do not attack anything larger than what they think they can kill.

        • Isabel Gibson says:

          Barbara – Yes, that was sort of the rationale we were given re the gators. Bringing down a large prey (like an adult human) wouldn’t be worth the energy expended as we’d be too big to ingest easily.

  4. Judith Umbach says:

    I did enjoy our walk together. Especially from this distance!

    • Isabel Gibson says:

      Judith – Yeah, there’s something to be said for nature documentaries. Quite a lot, in fact.

  5. Jim Robertson says:

    Nice stroll with the birds, bugs and gators!

    And nicely put together in a video


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