Little known fact- I spent a little more than a year that I can barely remember in a small Illinois town called Loda. But Loda was (is) so small, that the 'big town' everyone from Loda went to was Paxton. They had a grocer and a single screen movie theater. I went back there in 1999 (I think) and again in 2007 to see the old place.
My mom loves telling the story about seeing movies in that theater in 1971. Mainly, when a train went past, the place shook, and sometimes it shook so hard the movie cut out for a few seconds. It was comical to her.
Anyhow, not long after my most recent visit, the old theater apparently burned down. I was surfing YouTube and typed in 'Paxton Illinois' just to see what gem I might turn up. Poof.
It's funny how memory works. I distinctly remember nothing from those days. I was 2 years old. However, I clearly had some images etched into my mind. One is that of the logo of the Illinois Central railroad. I recall one day seeing an orange box car bearing the black circle with an 'IC' shaped like a rail, while I was stopped at a grade crossing for a passing train, was overwhelmed with emotion, and couldn't figure out for days why. (See the video below at about the :58 second mark.)
The other memory that similarly jumped right into my mind was of a three story old farm house. I was driving around somewhat aimlessly when all of a sudden I saw the farm house and absolutely knew that I had lived there. I drove up and talked to the folks living there, and sure enough, the owners knew the names of the people my parents rented the top floor from. I called my mom and described the house, and she confirmed it.
I want to find the pics I took in 1998. I find it hard to believe, but it seems that I didn't take any pics in 2007. Maybe I just can't find where I stored them. Yeah, that's more believable.