As a child I remember getting on the train with my parents to go to the beach (which took over 1 hour), then I remember going to the city of Fier several times to visit my aunt (which would take almost a whole day). Then, democracy came and I don’t remember ever getting on a train again!
However, I still carry those memories as a child. I even remember my parents lifting me up to get inside the train through the windows so I could get seats before other people. I also remember falling asleep in the train after a long day playing on the beach. I recall my parents telling me a story of how when they were still dating, the train derailed as they were getting closer to the village of Golem (in Durres) and thankfully got out safely.
Moreover, it is my conviction that trains do have their place in the memories of many an Albanian, but those memories have faded with the advent of personal cars and improved transportation means.
For those of you who would like to read a bit more about how Albanian trains some years ago then I suggest reading this very interesting article on the Economist (2010): Correspondent’s diary, Day three: Albania’s long-suffering railways.