If employees at a bank branch in the Chinese city of Nanning had been feeling sleepy at a morning meeting last Friday, they would have been wide awake at its abrupt end.
During what seems like a team briefing captured on video, a 7.5kg python suddenly drops from the ceiling - brushing past a woman's shoulder on the way - sparking 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 Nanning wildlife authority went down to handle the situation. One of the authority's workers said: "When we arrived, we saw it under the sofa looking aggressive. We observed that it was a wild python."
He said the bank workers deduced that the python was possibly hunting prey, resulting in vigorous movement that caused the ceiling to give way. The captured snake was handed over to the wildlife rescue and protection centre.
Nanguo Zaobao said that while there was a residential building next to the bank, there had been no reports of lost pythons. It added that there was a nearby market selling flowers and pets, and a 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.