Gathering a large black trash bag ... a body bag to be we half believed, out we went, intending to view the crime scene first and then head for the shed and the flat blade shovel with which to transfer the corpse to the body bag. When we got there, there was no crime scene. There was no corpse. That opossum had played 'possum to a tea. He/she really knew how to carry off the role. Part of my mind had noted, I reflected, that there were neither blood nor guts on the critter ... but I thought of snapped necks instead as that is the dog's favored method of dispatch for opponents. Part of me had been completely duped.
Posting this among my Facebook friends, one had an interesting tale to tell of another opossum. He'd found one outside his home, dead as a doornail. He had a picture taken of him holding the dead critter up by the tail. He was going to wait until the next morning for burial services. When that morning came, the dead opossum had resurrected and gone. Again, kudos to the opossum world for getting the role down so well.
The lesson of all this is simple. Head knowledge only goes so far. Until you know something emotionally, experientially, it just isn't the same thing ... and harder to accept when stumbled upon when out checking on your barking beagle. And that's the barking beagle truth.