Posted by: Alastair Rosie | June 22, 2014

Tabitha’s Tale

Of witch hunts, vampires and hair salons.

My editor was impressed with my last interview with DS Tom McIntyre but upon seeing a photograph of Tom beside Tabitha, the woman who cut his hair she winced. “Why can’t I look more like her.” That comment led to a phone call to Tabitha and a week later I broached my editor with the story idea. Tabitha would style her hair for free while I interviewed her and my editor. Up until now of course my editor, Jodie Green hasn’t met a vampire and it took all my powers of persuasion to get her into the salon. I think however the idea of a free makeover swung it for me.
Tabitha McLean was born Seonag Donaldson in 1590, her oldest sister, Siusaidh was born two years earlier and the youngest child, Iseabail was born in 1594. Their mother, Marjorie however, died in childbirth leaving their father, Duncan to raise three daughters. Duncan was a tenant farmer but when he died in 1605 it was left to Siusaidh to continue raising her two sisters.
“It was the way it was done back then. We had no living relatives nearby but my father had left instructions that if anything should happen to him then Siusaidh was to mail a letter to a woman called Morganna who was living in France. He left the address of a man in Leith who would see to it that the letter got to her.” We’re sitting in her newest salon located in Stirling and she’s hung a sign on the door and closed the salon to customers while she attends to Jodie’s hair. My editor has her head hanging over a basin while Tabitha massages shampoo through her hair. Jodie opens one eye gingerly and looks at her for a moment as she does the calculations.
“You look good for four hundred and twenty four.”
“Four hundred and twenty three,” she corrects her, “I was born in November, but thanks.”
Read more…


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