Ecca is what my firstborn sister first called me, and it is what I call my new online presence. So at this point, it encapsulates my history.
Born in the Stanford University Hospital the 10th of February, 1977, to two bright-eyed young parents, Russ and Eleanor Ritter. Oldest of 4 children: Erica, Corinna (1979), Teresa (1982), and William (1984).
Earliest memories are from Fremont, California, before age 7, and from Schenectady NY at age 3. E.g. nuns at Dominican kindergarten saying it hadn't snowed here in 15 years, giving horse-crazy girl a cloth sample with horses printed on it; learning to pump on a swing, making snow-men and snow-women and snow-bunnies and snow-dolphins with Mom, in the abundant snow of the other coast. Chocolate, locomotives, mud- and butter-sculptures, and horses are among favorites; best friends Sharon, cousins Emily and Marisa.
Moved to Oregon at age 7, delighted to skip a few months of school in the process, and watch kittens being born in godmother MaryAnne's farmhouse. Moved into family home on 1/2 acre lot in Aloha, Oregon.
Attended Beaverton public schools Hazeldale, Kinnaman, Five Oaks, and Aloha High School grades 2-12.
Hobbies included arts, 4H leathercraft, horses, basketball, band and marching band, theatrical productions, brief forays into Science/Math bowls, chess club, National Honors Society. Closest friends involved in activities such as band, drama, horses. Family pastimes including making music (vocal & instrumental), church (St. Elizabeth Ann Seaton parish), camping, hiking, trips to nearby beaches and mountains, and romping in the backyard with neighbors.
At age 13, visited East Coast (massachusetts/connecticut) with parents, then England (london/sussex) and Germany (Augsburg to Berlin). Significant relationships included Reed, Mike & Matt, Tracey, Amber, Christina (mentor), Samantha, Jed (objet), John (beau/jo), Kris^2, Coburn (mentor), teachers Foster, Craig, Abahazy, Morris, Vandahey, Rick.
Matriculated at Hampshire College (Amherst, Mass.) in 1995, attained BA 1999, concentration in Physics & Art. Main extracurricular activities included fencing, swing dance & other dances, Celtic Studies Club, stage combat, hiking, riding team, dating and almost-dating, live music (Great Big Sea, Cordelia's Dad), enjoying antics of dorm-mates. Long-standing friendships with Jeff (Captain), Chris/Peter (sometime beau), Alana, Julie, David (2 yrs beau), Scott, Ben^3, Herb (mentor), Kathryn, Erin, Katya, John, Aaron, Alan Hodder (superb teacher) .... Worked summer jobs in Oregon all 4 years, including clerical, construction, PIRG canvassing, computer inventory, internships. Anticipated career in architecture until spending summer as receptionist for stressed-out team of urban architects.
Moved back to Oregon, joined OMSI (Oregon Museum of Science and Industry). First in Visitor Services (ticket sales, ushering, etc.) then (after break to attend friends' graduation and visit England & Scotland) moved into Science Education department. Stayed there 4 more years. Learned to perform for large and small audiences, various and mixed ages. Other activities included gardening, cooking, hanging out with various housemates, crafts, swing dancing, hiking, attending Illahee lectures, studying Spanish, Chinook, economics, ecology; dating; romping with friends in various parks and brewpubs. Friends / relationships: Michael (sometime beau), Sarah, Kam, Margaret & Zak, Stephanie, Anders (3 yrs beau), Marilyn (mentor), Melanie, Warren.
Other significant events of this time: parents' divorce 2000-2001; sister Teresa married to Jeff in 2003; Corinna to Brett in 2004; William became engaged to Kat somewhere in there. Dad remarried August 2004.
Quit work June 2004 in time for C's wedding; began traveling as described in Journal.Though many of the subsequent events are described here, I should probably mention my own marriage to Ernie Wisner. Our ongoing work, and life's persistent problems, keep me busy lately. You can see more of what we do at http://www.ErnieAndErica.info.