14th November, 2020

by Alia Wilhelm

After months of sitting still and watching the world change outside of my window, I welcomed a trip where, for once, I was the item shooting through space while the landscape around me stayed the same. Traveling through hundreds of miles of corn fields suddenly felt romantic. I had spent the lockdown mostly indoors, and from the last day of winter until one of the first days of summer, I relished the shady corner of the living room and watched the flowers outside my window emerge, then drop, only to be replaced by new buds. Now, after being a stationary witness for all those months, I could finally be in motion too, undergoing my own kind of change. I remember vividly that first moment the wind tore through my hair, and the car's stereo system emitted louder than I expected the sound of our favourite high school songs. It felt awkward to be singing with the windows down because I hadn't expressed myself in so loud a way since all of this had begun. The whole year had been muted, turned down to the lowest volume. For a moment, belting out the words, I felt like I was impersonating someone else, then realised it was me.

Alia Wilhelm is a Nearness co-founder. She works as a multimedia artist and director's assistant in London. You can follow her @aliiiiia and check out her work at