to execute it. If I were to suffer you to depart, and my superiors were to know it, I should lose my office and incur the penalty of five days' imprisonment."
I happened to have a few coins in my pocket, and putting in my hand, I caused them to jingle a little against each other. "Your case is a hard one," said the officer, "I suppose you are desirous to get on." "Yes-- my preparations are all made, and it will be a great inconvenience for me to remain." "What say you," he called out to his companion who stood at the door looking into the street, "shall we let them pass? They seem to be decent people." The young man mumbled some sort of answer. "Here," said the officer, holding out to me my passport, but still keeping it between his thumb and finger, "I give you back your passport, and consent to your leaving Florence, but I wish you particularly to consider that in so doing, I risk the loss of my place and imprisonment of five days." He then put the paper into my hand, and I put into his the expected gratuity. As I went to the carriage, he followed and begged me to say nothing of the matter to any one. I was admitted into Pisa with less difficulty. It was already dark; I expected that my baggage would undergo a long examination as usual; and I knew that I had some dutiable articles. To my astonishment, however, my trunks were allowed to pass without being opened, or even the payment of the customary gratuity. I was told afterwards that my Italian servant had effected this by telling the custom-house officers some lie about my being the American Minister.
Pisa has a delightful winter climate, though Madame de Staël has left on record a condemnation of it, having passed here a season of unusually bad weather. 2 Orange and lemon trees grow in the open air, and are now loaded with ripe fruit. The fields in the environs are green with grass nourished by abundant rains, and are spotted with daisies in blossom. Crops of flax and various kinds of pulse are showing themselves above the ground, a circumstance sufficient to show that the cultivators expect nothing like what we call winter.
MANUSCRIPT: NYPL-GR (draft) TEXT: LT I, pp. 29-36; first published in EP for January 27, 1835.
Pisa Feb 4 1835
Will you be so good as to send me, of the papers which may arrive for me from America, only the New York Evening Post for the Country.