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Remembering Kara: The Best Trip to Walmart

Classmate remembers Kara Knop

Kara+Knop+and+Sylena+Martin+on+their+puppy-adopting+trip+to+Walmart.
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Remembering Kara: The Best Trip to Walmart

Kara Knop and Sylena Martin on their puppy-adopting trip to Walmart.

Kara Knop and Sylena Martin on their puppy-adopting trip to Walmart.

Kara Knop and Sylena Martin on their puppy-adopting trip to Walmart.

Kara Knop and Sylena Martin on their puppy-adopting trip to Walmart.

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A phone call was not one of my favorite alarms but that is what I woke up to that morning. Normally, I could ignore it, but the ringing was so loud I had no choice but to pick it up. It was Kara on the other line, of course. She was the only one bold enough to call me in the mornings. She wanted to go to Walmart to get some pictures printed off for her room. I agreed to go, mainly because she would have pouted until I said yes, but also because I needed a new door mirror. Of course I offered to go later in the day.

It was around 2:00 p.m. when I heard honking outside my house. Kara was always annoyingly on time. As I walked out the door, I heard my mom say “Don’t forget to stop by your Grandma’s house!” My grandma had been bothering my mom to get me to come see her for a long time now. It was actually quite funny how my mom would always forget things unless it benefited her. Anyway, as I rolled into her car, she laughed. “What?” I said. “Nothing,” she laughed. She really did not have to say anything because I already knew what she was thinking. I had on the same clothes I slept in and my hair was thrown up into a sloppy bun. I looked like I just rolled out of bed while Kara dressed like she was going on a date or something.

Since my grandma lived in Sparta, we decided to go to Sparta Walmart instead of Chester’s. Sparta was also a super Walmart so there was more variety there anyway. While driving, windows down, music blasting in our ears, we sang songs, high pitched and off key.  I had to let her know we had to stop by my Grandma’s house, so I screamed “We gotta stop by Granny’s house!” Kara gave me a thumbs up and went back to singing her songs. After almost losing our voices, we decided to go to my grandma’s house before going to Walmart and I will say that it was the best decision of my life.

When we got to my Grandma’s, I told Kara it would not take long so she could wait it the car. She was fine with that considering she still had 3 songs left on her playlists to jam out to. As soon as I entered my grandma’s house, it smelled like dogs. I found that really strange because my grandma had not had a dog in years. As I entered my grandma’s room, I heard barking. The most beautiful dog I had ever seen was roaming around my Grandma’s bedroom floor, probably looking for something to eat. I instantly dropped to my knees in awe. I wanted it! It was the cutest thing I had ever seen! “Do ya want it?” is what I heard come out of my grandmother’s mouth. I thought it was a joke because who would give away such a beautiful black lab! “It’s a girl ya know. She don’t bite or nothin’. I wanted a boy so I’m tryin’ to get rid of ‘er.” My mind was blown at that point. I did not hesitate after that. I picked her up and dashed out the door.

When I got into Kara’s car, she was so excited that, almost shouting, she said, “Oh my gosh! It’s so cute!” “It’s mine!” I enthusiastically said. “Nuh uh!” Kara said.  I just rolled my eyes. I knew she would not believe me because my mom would never let me get a dog. “I want one!” she said as she got out of the car to go inside my grandma’s house. I followed behind her, carrying my baby Lab in one hand. My grandma told us she got my dog from a lady down the street and that there were siblings! She also warned us to be careful because the lady was crazy. We were too excited at that point to even care! We could get siblings and they would dress alike and go on playdates!

The lady with the dogs lived in an old small house. It was very unsanitized and looked really dirty. The house looked so sketchy that neither Kara nor I wanted to get out and knock on the door. Eventually we worked up the courage to go to the door (Not really. We just played Rock, Paper, Scissors to determine who would knock. I lost.) As soon as I knocked, dogs started barking. Some barks were loud and some were quiet. “Shut up!” we heard the lady scream as she opened the door. I held Kara’s hand. I was so scared. The lady was crazy, like my grandma said. Her eyes were wandering around us and she was repeating words over and over again. We were pretty sure she was doped up. “My grandma said she got a dog from you. Uh, a girl Lab.. We were wondering if you had anymore dogs?” I said, still holding Kara’s hand. “YES! TAKE THEM ALL!” The lady replied so loud I could smell the liquor roll off her breath. “I’ll go get them!”

As we waited, we heard screaming and dog cries. Kara was so excited to save a dog from this tragic place. She started to look up names on her phone. “How about Moz!” she said. “You have a turtle named Moz already, Kara.” “Oh yeah…” Kara said with thoughts about her turtle on her mind. “Let’s wait to see the dog to name it.” As I said that, the lady came out with a basket full of dogs. Yes, a BASKET. Kara and I both went to the basket in awe. The dogs were so adorable that we were almost in tears. “Which one do you want?” I asked. “I dunno, you choose for me!” Kara said. I knew that would happen. She never wanted to make decisions on her own.

After about 15 minutes Kara finally chose the runt of the litter. I, quite frankly, thought he was the cutest. We put them in Kara’s back seat very carefully. We got in and started driving. We were so happy to take these dogs home! Kara even started planning on how to get them potty trained and staying the night more so they could have play dates! We never even realized that we never asked for these animals. Our parents would never say yes! But they were so cute! So as we were riding back to Chester we made a pact. No matter what, we would keep our cute dogs. Even if we got them on impulse! So that is the story on how Harley and Decker got their homes. And now that I think about it, we never even made it to Walmart.

 

 

Editor’s note: Kara Knop, CHS Class of 2019, died from injuries sustained in a traffic accident over the summer. Her classmate, Sylena Martin, remembered Kara in this essay submitted for the Rhetoric & Composition I class.

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