When we take the uphill route we pass a house (in both directions) that is "in progress". There are 1/2 finished houses like this all over town. It is possible that the economy has something to do with why these homes are not getting worked on. It's also possible that people are just working on them when they have the time and/or money. What is fascinating to me, however is being able to see the bones of a house in Italy!
Now I grew up in California, but I think the same is true in Washington... we build our houses out of wood. They creak a little, they tend to "settle", but they don't fall down in an earthquake. In Italy homes are made out of concrete! The floors, the pillars, the walls even the roof... it looks absolutely crazy to me! I'm sure that some of the wisdom of the concrete is that they are cooler in summer and all - but it still freaks me out. The other morning Zoe asked us if we heard all of the thunder the night before. Neither Doug nor I heard a thing!
Of course as we tour around this beautiful country we are often looking at buildings that are literally hundreds of years old. They definitely build things to last! As for me... I'm still glad that my house is made of wood... It may not be there a hundred years from now, but it will probably last through the next earthquake!