WILLIAM ABNEY

Will Abney

WILLIAM ABNEY

Professional student and teacher of Writing and Literature in Athens, GA. I love sports, languages, and travelling, and my life is best when I get to combine as many as possible! 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. As a vexillophile, I like to collect flags from the countries I visit. 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 Master of Divinity), the University of Georgia (master's in French), Texas Christian University (Master of Liberal Arts), Western Michigan University (master's in Science Education), the Ohio University (Master of Social Science), and the University of Arkansas (Master of Education).



North America » United States » Georgia August 16th 2021

Maybe you’ll remember when I flew to Wyoming back in December, I promised I’d never fly again until I had been vaccinated and had a good reason for flying instead of driving. Well, Alaska beckoned, and I am fully vaccinated, so I answered the call. As a result, I ended up flying to Fairbanks on American Airlines, and then the return trip was with Delta. Masks are still required on both (in fact, on all airlines, so that's not really a point of comparison). But there's a clear winner, and if you’d like to know which one will get my money in the future, keep reading. I wish there was a direct flight from Atlanta to Fairbanks, but that’s not the case. I had connecting flights in other cities, so all in all, I took 2 ... read more
Checking a bag at the gate for free? Yes, please!
The entertainment setup for American Airlines
Entertainment, part 2

North America » United States July 31st 2021

I finally got around to taking my first long-distance train trip in America. It was eye opening. I’m writing this down for two reasons: first, I want to keep it for my own memories, when it all starts to fade; and second, I’m hoping people will learn from my experiences. There’s plenty of ups and downs regarding train travel, and as someone who has done long distances in Europe and Canada, I thought I was pretty well versed in what to expect from Amtrak. Not only has Covid changed things, however, but the American context cannot be overstated. The USA is a big country that somehow only has a single company in charge of all passenger rail travel. Now that I’ve done the whole American train thing, I think I’ve got enough perspective to make recommendations ... read more
Typical urban train platform (DC here)
DC's Union Station is lots of fun to look at on the inside
Moynihan Train Hall at Penn Station in NYC

North America » United States » Virginia » Arlington July 26th 2021

Bjørn and I wouldn’t have had the chance to check out America’s premier military cemetery at Arlington, if not for Amtrak. (More on that later.) Despite wanting some easy (and free) tourism during a layover, I wasn't quite expecting to be confronted with my own mortality at so many turns. I also wasn’t prepared for the vastness of the grounds, or for how easy it was to get there. Even in the blistering heat, I’m glad I got a chance to see a place that made me question a lot of things about myself and even my convictions about national mythology. It started out easily enough. I didn't even have to leave the train station to get to the DC Metro, since Amtrak's Union Station is on the metro's Red Line. Change at the aptly named ... read more
View of DC from the grave of L'Enfant, the chief planner for DC
Bjørn is too short to drink from the fountains
Gravestones are quite similar throughout much of the cemetery

North America » United States » New York » Buffalo July 18th 2021

Depending on what you want to do in Buffalo, it can take anywhere from a day to a week to see everything. I found some great architectural sights, amazing food, and opportunities to relax and watch the world go by during my 3 days in town. My main purpose this time was to see my beloved Toronto Blue Jays play an entire weekend series at their home away from home, Sahlen Field. But as a lover of travel and cool sites, I didn’t let that take up all my time. Here’s my run-down of the best (and not so best) things I enjoyed in the area. Sights, Vertical and Horizontal As dedicated readers of my blog will know, I’m a sucker for Art Deco architecture. If you love it as much as I do, then you ... read more
I always like good signage
Fire Station and Buffalo City Hall - beautiful Art Deco functional monuments
Art Deco friezes are the best


I’m willing to bet that many, if not most, travel writers from the US have been to Niagara Falls, at least once. This was my third trip, though it’s the first time I can remember seeing the American side of the Falls. But I’ll only get to my experience of the Falls later. Instead, I started out my journey in the northern areas of the Niagara region: Youngstown and Lewiston. Youngstown might just be my favorite little town in New York now. I had done a little research before going on this trip, and I discovered that there’s a FREE tourist bus that goes between the Falls in the south and Fort Niagara in the north, making stops at most of the touristy locations in between. My intention was to use that bus to get to ... read more
The Whirlpool with one of the tourist boats down below
Youngstown
The harbor at Youngstown is full of sailboats

North America » United States » Ohio » Canton July 15th 2021

I’ve heard that the journey is more important than the destination. Is that just for life in general, or for trips we take? Maybe both. For my trip, the voyage was much more memorable than the destination. Violence has a way of doing that to you. And so this entry will be short on touristy stuff, mainly because I didn’t really do that much sightseeing at my destination, or even on the way. So let’s dispense with that first, since most of my anonymous readers probably only clicked on this entry for my experience in Canton, Ohio. Part 1: Tourism, or Sometimes You Get What You Pay For I’ve only been to Canton once before, on a larger road trip a few years back. I did the presidential things: the McKinley tomb and house. I had ... read more
Display of miniature replica dresses in the main room
Mamie Eisenhower's pink shoes!
Empty theater at the First Ladies NHS

North America » United States » Florida » St Petersburg July 10th 2021

Despite the purpose of this trip being sports related, I think the highlight was the Dalí Museum. I wasn’t even aware of its existence until I was looking for things to do before the trip, and it was the top-rated experience in St. Petersburg. It did not disappoint. I knew we wouldn’t really have time to do much aside from baseball, but it didn’t really make sense to drive over 4 hours just for a couple of baseball games, especially when you’re traveling with someone who doesn’t have any stake in the outcome of those games. Perhaps you’ve heard of sports tourism? For me, it’s the idea of using sporting events and locations as an impetus to travel. It’s worked well for the past few years when I’ve had an itch to go somewhere. And I’m ... read more
Exterior of the Dali Museum
Gala Contemplating the Mediterranean Sea Which at Twenty Meters Becomes the Portrait of Abraham Lincoln - Homage to Rothko (Second Version), by Dali
Dad contemplates The Disintegration of the Persistence of Memory

North America » United States » Florida » Miami June 22nd 2021

This won’t come as a surprise to anyone, but Miami in June is hot. I’ve spent most of my life in the South, but I had always heard of the cool breezes and daily rain showers that kept Miami from being a sweatbox. Perhaps I just had a different idea of a sweatbox. Either way, I was always glad when I could find air conditioning. It took me 6 months to be able to do anything touristy in 2021, but now that summer has arrived, I’m looking forward to spending more time getting out and about. And yes, I am fully vaccinated, so barring some new variant (I’m looking at you, delta) or preventative measures, I’m going to be doing more traveling and writing in the next couple of months. Most of my faithful readers will ... read more
Calle Ocho, 8th Street in Little Havana
The struts for the dome, leading away from loanDepot Park
Colorful houses in Little Havana

North America » United States » Florida » Orlando December 26th 2020

Two things brought me back to Orlando for the third time in the past year: the color pink, and the chance to see what’s been called “America’s Team” in person. On top of that, I got to try some off-brand KFC that punished my body the next day, so that’s exciting. As with my previous two trips to the area, I didn’t do a lot of sightseeing. Disney and theme parks aren’t my thing, even when there’s not a pandemic going on. Still, it’s hard to escape the tourist-dependent landscape of central Florida, even when you’re not here for touristy purposes. While college football bowl games are normally a massive haul for tourism, 2020 has taken its toll on all of that. Unlike my previous bowl game in Montgomery, I couldn’t buy just a single ticket ... read more
The Cure Bowl: lots of pink!
The interior of New Texas Fried Chicken is something else
Dusk at Camping World Stadium

North America » United States » Alabama » Montgomery December 23rd 2020

I’ve heard December 23rd called “Festivus” for a while (thanks, Seinfeld), and in more recent years, “Christmas Adam” (as in Christmas Eve Eve) has become a thing. Whatever you call it, I found myself in Montgomery for the day, so I took advantage of the occasion to see as much of the Civil Rights heritage as I could. But as you might expect, that’s not the only reason I went down to the capital of Alabama. What else might bring me somewhere these days? Well… It’s the most wonderful time of the year: College Football Bowl Season! Did you think I was going to say Christmas or the holidays or something? I suppose they all coincide at this point, so that’s fair. But more than college football, the bowl season gives me incentive to travel and ... read more
Always a little awkward when you stare into someone else's eyes through the camera
My literal sack lunch at Mama's Sack Lunches
At the steps leading to the State Capitol in Montgomery




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