As I made my way toward the Pony, I expected I would be early before the others. But much to my surprise when I arrived there was already a large crowd near the steps! I pulled out my harp and began to play for the crowd, as they seemed to be waiting for my arrival.
I scanned the crowd and saw many many new faces. I was a bit overwhelmed, truth be told. I knew however that some friends had not yet arrived, so I made small talk until their entrance. I announced that we should all head to the Mess Hall for our typical revelries, and the large crowd followed.
With the crowd in such a confined space, it began to feel very chaotic. I stayed quiet in the corner for the most part, but chatted with a hobbit lass named Opheelia, apparently of relation to Miss Ghraye. I sipped some ale I had kept from my visit to the Golden Perch and tried to pick out conversations in the room around me. It was very hard, as most people had broken off into small conversations of their own, and there were multiple musicians playing. I'm afraid I don't have much experience in large crowds. This group was the size of my whole village back home!
Much to my happiness, the crowd settled down after some time and people began to tell their stories. Altigar told of a wicked man named Wilem who turned into a tree becuase of his evil deeds. Two other men told of their journeys in life: wight slaying and elven fights. I told the poem about Fastitocalon that I had learned in Rivendell.