One of the places Paul always wanted to take me to in State College was this Indian restaurant he discovered late in his time there, and when he realized late in the weekend that we hadn’t managed to make it, we decided to squeeze it in before we left town Sunday. As long as we were checked out by noon but weren’t stuck trying to kill time in Altoona before we could check in to our hotel there at 3, we had some time to play with. So we had a small breakfast of bananas and granola in our room, lounged around for a bit, checked out a little before 11:30, and got to India Pavilion in time for the start of their lunch buffet.

I’ve been told by multiple people now to try Indian food. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this here, but everyone who knows me knows I just cannot handle spicy food. Now, I used to think Green Bowl’s pineapple curry sauce was spicy and I don’t anymore so I like to think I’ve built up some sort of tolerance, but overall, my tastebuds can’t take much, so I was worried about trying Indian. Fortunately, Paul has a pretty good idea of what I’ll like and what I can handle, and I trust his judgment. India Pavilion was a good choice.

I honestly don’t remember what I even ate, but I can tell you I tried every vegetarian dish on the buffet and I like every single one and went back for seconds on most of them, although it was very, very new–they were flavors I had to get used to, kind of, and keep in mind that I’m of Polish/Hungarian/German descent so I’m used to very different foods. I like trying new things, it’s just that this was probably about the biggest difference in foods I’ve experienced, but I liked it. I’d go back. I had about two plates before my tastebuds tapped out from the spice, which is respectable for me, and then I tackled the desserts they had out. Which were probably my favorite, of course.

And best of all, the whole meal cost us like $18, which is probably the cheapest date we’ve had in the history of dates.

We hit the road after that and had a pretty short drive to Altoona. We went straight over to Sci Fi Valley Con, which was pretty neat. It was very, very similar to Steel City Con, honestly. From what I hear, it’s grown quit a bit over the last few years and expanded to two floors this year, but all in all, I’d say it comes close to the same amount of space Steel City Con uses spread across one large floor with very similar vendors. But Sci Fi Valley had cooler celebrity guests, better organization, and seems to value their customers more. I can’t see us going back unless they get a great guest we can’t miss just because I don’t feel it’s worth the 2+ hour drive otherwise, but we did have a good time. And I know Paul bought me some birthday presents there.

I do think it’s interesting that some of the vendors that no longer go to Steel City Con go out there, though, and I’ve noticed that there are vendors that’ll hit Steel City once or twice but never come back. Sure, could just be that maybe they don’t do well, but with rumors floating around about vendors being unhappy with how it’s run, it is really interesting. I’ve bought from a few people now I’d buy from again if they ever came back.

We went back to the hotel and hung out for a bit until I got really hungry. Somehow, Paul wasn’t hungry, even though it had been hours since lunch, and I waited as long as I reasonably could before we hit a small local chain for dinner. And then it was back to the hotel to watch the Pens game.

And then the Pens won the Stanley Cup, and all was well.

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