We had the good fortune of connecting with Naz Majidah and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Naz, what do you attribute your success to?
The most important part of RIBI’s [Reconciling Identities: Being Indonesian] success is the connections made, the bonds formed through this simple group. We’ve been able to gather Indonesians from all over the world and create this inclusive space where we validate each other, ruminate over shared experiences, foster learning and unlearning our complicated history, and uplift each other. To me, success isn’t measured in numbers, it’s by each and every genuine soul connection.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I created the RIBI, Reconciling Identities: Being Indonesian group out of necessity. I was trying to come to terms with living authentically in my truth and that meant closely examining my identity as an Indonesian living in the diaspora. Wanting to dig deeper and truly understand what being Indonesian meant, I placed a call out over the internet to find likeminded and likehearted Indonesians who felt the same and wanted to come with me on this journey.
I was uncovering a lot about our history, the good, bad and the ugly and I didn’t want to sit with my feelings and process it alone. It felt cathartic to just lay out my complicated truth and even more so once people started messaging me and validating everything I’m saying. I felt like I had finally found my people!
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I’m actually from Maryland and so when I first moved here 3.5 years ago, it was like an awakening! The food is fantastic, the city is just teeming with culture, resilience, it’s magical! I have a great Jamaican spot called Country Style Jamaican on 630 N La Brea Ave #111, Inglewood, CA 90302.
I also love perusing Little Tokyo. Would really love to try Bone Kettle one day and have always found comfort in the Indonesian food scene in West Covina. Martabak Cafe, you have to try Indonesian pancakes!
I spend more time in Orange County and so whenever anyone comes to visit, we always NEEED to go to Treasure Island in Newport and Alta Laguna. The sights are breathtaking. You won’t regret it.
Our friends from the amazing podcast Your Very Annoying Friends, Nithia and Tati (who are also RIBI members!) are also super fun to be around. We only just met but it feels like we’re best friends already. Can’t wait for date night!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Sinta Penyami Storms (@firstname.lastname@example.org) is a Philly based community leader and activist. She really helped guide me into community building, networking and developing a strong sense of purpose in terms of connecting with other Indonesians. I’ve learned so much from her mentorship!
Other: Instagrams: @nazmajidah and @real_indome