"Gedung itu menyala merah."
Translation:That building lights up in red.
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I pointed out that sentence to my native-speaker informant and she agreed it didn't make sense. I then presented a scenario where a person who's looking at a sunset glances back at a (previously) white building to notice how it was now bathed in red light --- "Gedung itu menyala merah," would be an utterance that might very well issue from the mouth of a native speaker to capture said situation.
I think "That building lights up red" can also be a correct translation. There are many buildings near my house that light up different colours at night, so this is just what I imagine this sentence to mean.
Unless the translator is being poetic, and this is just a nice way of saying the building is on fire...
May I suggest "lit in" as a replacement for "alight"? It's a funny thing -- we do light buildings, but any descriptions are usually highly contextual. If we're noting something about how a building is lit, it's usually on the way to describing the significance of the lighting. This feels like a naked sentence, somehow.
"The building" is totally fine. If you think about it, "The" and "That" kind of have the same meaning in English. The difference seems to be that when it's that, you're pointing right at it being very specific, whereas "the" can be slightly vaguer or more abstract. Indonesian just combines these into one word.
Well not quite. Eventually you learn "-nya" which covers that vaguer "The" meaning (as well as a lot of other things).
Eg "Cuacanya panas" The weather is hot. "Rumahnya besar" The house is big, Where house could refer to the one we're standing in right now. Sort of "The house that is obvious from context"