Today's little guy had a small stick about the size of a pencil, all covered in green lichen, with which he rolled and tumbled and played so vigorously it's a wonder he didn't exhaust himself. Sometimes he would stop long enough to nibble along the stick, as if eating an ear of corn, then suddenly return to his frenzied antics, wildly leaping and twisting into the air like a crazed gymnast. Sometimes he'd settle on his haunches perfectly still, then leap a vertical 18 inches into the air, only to land straight back down on his haunches like he'd never left the ground. Then he'd return to tumbling around his stick, tearing partway up the tree trunk and back down to attack his stick again. How cute and white, his upturned belly when he landed on his back. How giant and furry his tail, seeming way too big for his tiny self. Of course, he's gone by the time I get back with a camera.
More than newfound freedom, these are probably ground exercises, for the purpose of developing the life skills needed to leap safely through tree branches at high altitudes.
Do your exercises well, little squirrel. You're going to need all the speed and agility you can get when Moe runs you off the deck with his tennis racket. dkm