If any employees at a bank branch in Nanning city were feeling sleepy at a morning meeting last Friday (Oct 12), they would have been wide awake at its abrupt end.
During what seems like a routine team briefing captured on video, in what looks like closed-circuit television footage, a 7.5kg python suddenly drops from the ceiling - brushing past a woman's shoulder on the way - sparking great panic among the nine employees.
They immediately scatter and leave the room while the snake slithers frantically and finds refuge under a sofa.
Later in the video, some curious workers enter the room and take pictures of the animal.
The incident was first reported in Nanguo Zaobao, based on a clip circulating on the WeChat app.
According to the newspaper, the dramatic moment happened at around 10am, and the Nanning wildlife authority immediately went down to handle the situation.
One of the workers for the authority said: "When we arrived, we saw it under the sofa looking aggressive. We observed that it was a wild python."
He added the bank workers deduced that the python was possibly hunting prey, resulting in vigorous movement that caused the ceiling to give way.
The snake was eventually captured and handed to the local wildlife rescue and protection centre.
Nanguo Zaobao also wrote that while there is a residential building next to the bank, there were no reports of lost pythons. However, it added that there is a nearby market selling flowers and pets, and there is a possibility the snake could have escaped from a stall there.
This is not the first such incident at the bank branch. Last autumn, another python was reportedly seen there.