Unbeknownst to me, I left a gate unlatched today while doing barn chores.
And not just any gate, mind you, it was the gate that led straight outside to freedom. Straight into the path of a busy country road. It was the gate that led to grain and hay galore. It was the gate that led to milking parlors and stacked pumpkins. It was the gate that could lead to a loss of $4,000 in livestock if they got loose and couldn't be recaptured. If there was ever a gate that the animals dreamed of being left unlatched, it was this one. And I left it ajar this morning.
I went out this afternoon to do the routine barn chores of refilling water buckets and hay mangers, feeding pigs, and checking on chicks. Everything seemed normal. I looked ahead at the gate that is ALWAYS latched and found it swung wide open. I gasped in horror and wondered how many animals were gone.
I had no need to wonder though. Lying down in the entry way of the gate, chewing his cud and looking as calm as a saint was Darcy, my white wether lamb. Peaches tiptoed forward towards the sight of freedom, but Darcy glared her back to her spot at the hay manger. My little sheep kept all fourteen animals exactly where they belonged. I scratched him on the chin and told him he was wonderful before gently scooting him away from the gate. He simply chewed more cud with a stoic expression on his velvety face.
It's nice knowing that I have a sheep watching my back.