Iona's first fare was a military officer. At first, this man seemed interested in Iona's story, but when Iona turned around to talk to him in more detail, the officer started shouting at him about his driving. This resulted in the military officer tuning Iona out.
Iona's next fare was three obnoxious young men. They were unruly and offensive towards Iona but he gave them a ride anyway hoping they would just listen to him. Unfortunately, one of the men replied, "we shall all die," and Iona received no sympathy from them.
Finally, when he could no longer hold his thoughts in any longer, he took his horse back to the stable. He came upon another cabman and Iona told him about his grief only to find the cabman was fast asleep. Iona wanted to tell someone the details of his son's death yet no one showed an interest. This only drove him deeper into grief and only intensified his emotions. He watches crowds of people go by and the narrator adds: "Can he not find among these thousands someone who will listen to him?" In the end, Iona found refuge speaking to his horse. He poured his heart out to her … and she listened.