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My Curiosity and a Gator!
My Curiosity and a Gator!
by: Pamela Price Svoboda, webmaster of gone-ta-pott.com

I am a true nature lover
and there's nothing I like more than walking through the forest looking at nature. One day I decided to go for one of my normal nature walks among a very thick area of cypress trees. The trees were so thick in there until you normally didn't find alot of grass growing. Every now and then you would walk up and find a very sunny patch where a tree had fell down and let the light in. Here you would find beautiful vibrant green grass and flowers growing.

One week it had rained for days. It had flooded the banks of the creek and the water had flowed through the cypress trees about 4 inches deep. At that time I was nuts about frogs and I looked for them all over the place. I knew that since it had been raining for days, I was sure to find several different kinds in the cypress tree swamp. So I put on my boots and off I went. I walked to the fence....looked all around and made sure knowone was looking....crawled under.....ignoring the No Trespassing Sign like I had always done.

I absolutely loved walking through this area because there was not a house in site anywhere and the wildlife was something that I couldn't pass up. It was mostly birds and an occasional armadillo..... and squirrels. I never thought about the dangers at all because I had never been given a reason that it was dangerous. I was only thinking about searching out the frogs.

The day was sunny, I had my bucket and little garden shovel in hand.
Horticulture was my thing in school so it was natural to have a little bucket and shovel with me just in case I saw a neat plant growing. It was not uncommon for me to dig myself up some type of Lilly before I headed back home.

It was a normal nature walk, like always. Except this time I was walking in about 4 inches of water.  I still remember the smuck smuck smuck sound that it made when I took each step. It was sooooo beautifullllll!  Then! I saw something make a water ring ahead of me! I thought- YES! There's a frog scampering across the water!. It was scampering all over the place to! I took off running in the water and it was a cat and mouse game of chase. I was having the time of my life. Finally the quick little fellow cornered himself in a tree limb that had fell to the ground and I rushed my hands down to grab him! To my surprise it wasn't a frog at all. It was a baby gator. The little fellow wasn't more than about 6 inches long. Well I was wowed to see a little gator in the wild and was so excited! My curiosity got the best of me and I had never touched one before and I wanted to. Sooo, I reached down and grabbed up the little fellow and he was beautiful! But all of a sudden he started squeaking this little baby squeak sound that I can't explain.  I held the cute little guy up being careful not to hurt him and looked at his little mouth and eyes and thought to myself.....just how beautiful this creature was.

Well--- needless to say, this was a mistake.
All of a sudden I heard the sound of, well..... what sounded like air coming out of a tire. I started looking around to see where the sound was coming from and oooooooo myyyyyyy goshhhhhhh. What I saw looked like a big ugly motor boat barreling through the water, parting it like soft butter. She was about 25 yards away. (Thank Goodness!) I can still remember the white color of the water as it was flying over the back of a big mad mama gator, as she ran toward me!
(I guess it was the babies Mama)

Goshhhh ahhhh mightyyyy did I quickly put that baby down and start running!
I realized that I couldn't run very well in the water and the mud was slippery, making it hard for me. I had walked this area many times and I knew where every little tree stump was. Its a good thing too because up I went! I climbed the nearest tree that had fell over and was leaning up against another one. That Mama gator was still behind me and came within about 10 feet of the tree I was perched on. Well I remembered how that gator jumped and got that duck in my first encounter with a gator so I climbed as high as I could go. As I sat up in that tree I thought to myself....you know, nobody knows where I'm at.....and you know, nobody would ever think of looking for me in a No Trespassing Area either......and you know.......I should of never picked up that baby gator.

You know, that Mama gator knew I was up in that tree
because I think I sit there for what felt like a whole hour before she finally made her way slowly back toward the direction of the creek.

I learnt my lesson that day.

You know, I never did go back into the cypress trees for a nature walk again.
And you know what else, never have I cross a No Trespassing Sign either.

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Curiosity is an emotion related to natural inquisitive behaviour such as exploration, investigation, and learning, evident by observation in human and many animal species. As this emotion represents a drive to know new things, curiosity is the fuel of science and all other disciplines of human study.
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