The End of A Playtime

After watching any type of animal for a while, one becomes adept at reading feelings. Coyotes have the same intense feelings we humans have. Yesterday I was privileged to watch two coyotes play enthusiastically and joyfully: their smiles and exuberant chasing and wrestling were infectious as I watched them. Then, one disappeared from the scene. That is common for me to see. But what I also saw this time was the behavior of the one left behind. It looked for the first coyote, but could not find it. It’s entire stance and energy changed as it realized the playing was over. It trotted slowly, I would say forlornly, down the path about 200 yards and disappeared. Its change of behavior, the forlorn aspect, was as infectious to me, the observer, as had been the joy with which they had been playing.

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