Will Abney


Professional student and teacher of Writing and Literature in Athens, GA. I love languages and travelling, and my life is best when I get to combine the two! My wanderings tend to be solo, though I frequently meet up with friends that I've met on my previous travels. Some of my favorite things to do while travelling are eating local foods (though I'm sort of a picky eater), spending time in the outdoors, and seeing plays, musicals, or concerts. I like to collect flags from the countries I visit, which I believe makes me a vexillophile. I don't really get any other souvenirs for myself. I send TONS of postcards to my friends and family around the world, so give me your address and I'll send you one on my next trip. Some of my favorite photograph subjects are street signs, mountains, and odd angles of familiar (or even famous) objects. I'm a current MFA student in Creative Nonfiction at Bay Path University, as well as an alumnus of Mercer University (undergrad and seminary), the University of Georgia (master's in French), Texas Christian University (Master of Liberal Arts), Western Michigan University (master's in Science Education), and Ohio University (Master of Social Sciences).

North America » United States » Florida » Orlando November 21st 2020

Central Florida—land of palm trees, cool breezes, and 5 short rainstorms every afternoon. Also home to the most theme parks in the world. On Saturday, I saw several palm trees, enjoyed the cool breezes, and only endured 2 of those rainstorms. And my faithful readers will be happy to know that I successfully avoided all the theme parks. In these Covid times, only one thing gets me to travel: college football. Yeah, I know I’m weird. But as long as it’s outdoors, and I’ve got my mask, and other people are being at least somewhat responsible with distancing and mask-wearing, I don’t feel too bad. But boy, has the 2020 college football season been weird. Tell me something I don’t know, right? All the prognosticators are saying that if a team from a lower conference has ... read more
Loved finding this retro bike in my short wanderings around the UCF campus
A bold move declaring themselves the 2017 National Champions
A very organized campus here at UCF

North America » United States » Mississippi » Oxford November 14th 2020

*No sharks or trains were harmed in the making of this blog. ¡Olé! Ole Miss, that is. While not my first time at the University of Mississippi, this weekend was the first time I spent more than 7 hours in the town of Oxford and the university. I hadn’t even planned on coming to this school this season, but when have things ever gone to plan for anyone in 2020? Still, I finally got to my first SEC game of the season, and it was a barnburner. So much for the SEC being known as the conference of defense. In reality, times are a-changin’, especially in the year of Covid. Truly, this trip was more of a mini-vacay than my typical football experiences this year. Football just provided an impetus to go somewhere. And once I ... read more
She may not be much to look at, but she's got it where it counts, kid. Oops, wrong movie.
The man, the myth, the legend: Lane Kiffin
My favorite artwork in all of Oxford is in a booth at the Ajax diner

North America » United States » Georgia » Atlanta » Midtown October 31st 2020

Perhaps some of my readers will have seen the url=https://www.ajc.com/sports/college/captivating-photo-georgia-tech-from-1918-and-the-story-behind/XOukYT9082wGyHDyP27XVL/now-famous photo of masked fans attending a football game at Georgia Tech in 1918, during the Spanish flu pandemic. This week, I wanted to see the same place as it confronted a new pandemic, just over a century later. As luck would have it, one of my favorite teams, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, were playing at Georgia Tech on Halloween afternoon. This game was on the calendar before the pandemic, but originally scheduled to take place at the Mercedes Benz Stadium instead, presumably to accommodate the larger crowd expected for Notre Dame. As such, it had been one of my must-see games before the pandemic, and since it’s the only game this season (so far, and most likely will continue to be) that regular fa... read more
Nice green space on the Tech campus
Pink for breast cancer awareness (sorry not sorry for not wearing Irish green)
Shame that it still needs to be said (peep the guy in the upper right)

North America » United States » Alabama » Troy October 24th 2020

I know what you're thinking: another lower-tier game in Alabama. Guilty. But in my defense, the lower level of FBS football has been much more attractive this season than in previous seasons, mainly due to price and availability. But one of the schools that I wanted to attend even before the pandemic was Troy. I drove past the school on the same trip that I visited Southern Miss, five years ago, and I was equally desirous of attending a football game here as there. the schedule for this season, however, favored Southern Miss in September and Troy in October. To be honest, Troy was a potential site for me for several weeks this season, but since I skipped last week (after attending for two weeks in a row), I felt the need to go somewhere this ... read more
Central fountain on the Troy quad
The square in downtown Troy
Flo's door is easy to miss if you aren't looking

North America » United States » Alabama » Jacksonville October 10th 2020

I wasn't sure if I would go anywhere this week, at least when the season began. My undergraduate alma mater, Mercer University, was one of those programs that decided to sit out the full season for 2020. I don't normally go to a Mercer football game every season, but I try to get back every other year. The school didn't have a football program while I was a student there, but I know people who still live in Macon, so it's usually a semi reunion when I get to go back and see Mercer football. I was surprised to find that Mercer actually was going to play football this season; I noticed only after I saw that they were going to be playing at West Point at the end of October. That led me to the ... read more
Mercer swag, before the torrential downpour
JSU drums warming up
Right, right

North America » United States » Texas » Austin October 3rd 2020

This entry will be different from most that came before it. One of the things that sets this road trip off from the others is that it was not a solo road trip. Jack and I had planned this trip for at least a month, and it would be his only trip for the season. Since it was a Big-12 team, we've begun to think of this as our annual road trip. Last year, we went to see West Virginia, and this year it was Texas. Of course, I did not want to go just to see Texas; the visiting team for this weekend's match up was my alma mater, TCU. Last year, I went to see them play at Oklahoma, and we knew from the outset that it was hopeless to expect TCU to win. ... read more
The only state entry sign I photographed on this trip
Love Buc-ee's, and love his 'mask'
Common sight for this football season

North America » United States » Mississippi » Hattiesburg September 19th 2020

Dear readers, if I develop Covid symptoms in the next week to ten days, I’m pretty sure it will be because of this game. Fingers crossed. I hope this doesn’t become a common theme in my football travels this season. Once the current season began to take shape—and it still is taking shape with each passing week—I staked out a few places in the “lesser” conferences that I wanted to visit. Some of them were out of necessity, due to weird scheduling, ticket prices, and distances. But the University of Southern Mississippi, in the Conference-USA, was one that I wanted to make sure to visit. I drove through Hattiesburg about five years ago, on a trip to Texas, but I remember thinking how nice the campus looked and how big the stadium was (they call it ... read more
M.M. Roberts Stadium is also known as The Rock
Student Union at Southern Miss
The Administration Building at Southern Miss

North America » United States » Alabama » Birmingham September 3rd 2020

Why the hell am I in Birmingham, Alabama? And on a Thursday night? Under normal circumstances, those would be good questions. But 2020 has been anything but normal, and when it comes to college football, everything has been up in the air. So the short answer to those questions is, because it’s actual FBS-level college football where fans are allowed to attend. Spoiler alert: this post will have lots of reflection in it. In a year when most of us have been concerned about surviving, or on the other end of the spectrum, about government overreach and conspiracy theories, I’m just glad I got to attend a college football game at all. As it turns out, the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) has cheap tickets, is allowing fans to attend, and also hosted the very ... read more
My first glimpse of the field at Legion Field -- it was a hot day
Quite a few health concerns to be aware of on the big screen
rusty tower outside Legion Field

North America » United States » Louisiana » New Orleans January 1st 2020

In the world of college football, bowl games are beauty pageants at the end of the season that both end the year and set up the next one. Unless you’re playing for a national championship, that is. All the other games at the end of December and the beginning of January are understood to show the direction of your program—if you win the bowl game, you’re in good shape and get a little boost going into next year. Lose, and some people may get fired, but questions will certainly be asked about the health of your program. There are also several levels to bowl games; let’s call them tiers. The Playoff is the top tier, since only the four teams involved in it have a shot at winning the title. The next tier comprises the “New ... read more
It will never disappoint you
Make sure to get cheese on your burger here
The Superdome in New Orleans

North America » United States » Florida » Orlando December 28th 2019

This was an odd experience, since the game itself was fantastic, but everything surrounding it was a bit lackluster (and even downright frustrating). First off, let me say that I was excited I would get to attend a second game involving Notre Dame in which none of my loyalties would be questioned. Also, I could attend a game for a reasonable price. When the matchup was announced in early December, I was also thrilled that it would be in a location relatively close to home. I contemplated making it an overnight trip, especially since the kickoff time was set at noon. But with the money situation, the decision to do a day trip to Orlando was much more palatable. Wake up around 5:00, leave before 6:00, and then be back home in time to watch some ... read more
Welcome to Orlando!
The ticket that caused such a headache
My bowl pin, the only swag I purchased

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