The dedication at the front of Legendary Locals reads: “to all the extraordinary people of Encinitas who never even realized what legends they are: I hope this book goes some way to convincing them.”Linda Benson is one such legend. When she came along to my book launch at the Old Schoolhouse the crowds seemed to part, much I imagine as the waves must do when she launches herself upon the ocean. Everyone looked in awe at this truly cool, diminutive woman.
I was amongst them. As far as extreme sports go, I’m as likely to hang a ten as skip on the moon, but I still regard Linda Benson as an inspiration, and became just another awestruck groupie in my heroine’s presence, even as my shaky hand signed her copy of my book.
It seems odd, now that we’re firmly entrenched in the 21st century, that women were ever considered inferior to men. But Linda’s talent and tenacity have proved otherwise.
I often muse on this quote by Charlotte Whitton: “Whatever women must do they must do twice as well as men to be thought half as good.” Does that mean that Linda had to work four times as hard just to be equal? And even more to be a winner?