Bahir Dar is a college town and one can see students mingling in the market area. As in Sudan, a school uniform is standard. The primary schools are basic structures with relatively meagre resources. Hence, the request for pens and books is understandable. The excitement and exuberance of youth is evident in the students who choose to engage foreigners.
My assumption is that the aspirations of these youngsters hinge on the pursuit of higher education. As in the west, there seem to be many underemployed graduates and yet their opportunities are wider with a command of English and rudimentary technical skills. The curiosity is there and some of them have an infectious enthusiasm. Some will migrate to America, Australia, Canada or Europe for economic advantage.