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Tidak Apa-apa (it’s ok)

A student sends a question via email. He heard the answer “tidak apa-apa” (it’s ok) when he asked the condition of his friend (an Indonesian), which fell from the bike. He asked the use of two-word question ‘apa’ in that sentence.

In Indonesian language, to show ‘plural’  (plural) are made by repeating the word.

For example:

• Guru saya punya buku-buku tentang Indonesia. (My teacher has some books about Indonesia) (more than one book)

• Meja-meja ini harus dibersihkan sesudah pesta. (These tables should be cleaned after the party). (more than one table)

Similarly with the question words.

For example:

• Dia sudah ke mana-mana. (He has been to everywhere). (to Malioboro, Borobudur, Kraton, etc.)

• Toko itu ada di mana-mana. (That store is everywhere). (in Yogyakarta, Jakarta, Singapore, etc.)

• Dia bukan siapa-siapa. (He is not whoever). (not a teacher, president, director, etc.)

In the word ‘tidak apa-apa’ has meaning sick, not wounded, not dead, etc.. The word ‘tidak apa-apa’ also means ‘tidak ada masalah’ (no problem, it’s ok).

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