With one picture… you know you’re in Austria and not Australia when…

…the hardware store has a roof and is heated

heated hardware store - obi

In Melbourne, going to the hardware store in winter was always a bit of a chore – a cold chore. Large and with various outdoor sections, these places don’t tend to be very well heated, and some of the parts are actually outside, with merely a cover for a roof. I know that people think it’s not cold in Australia, but venturing into a freezing cold hardware shop when it’s only 10 degrees outside is not so fun… because it’s also about that inside.

But… you can’t even imagine how weird it is walking into a hardware store in Austria in winter, expecting the worst, and being hit with a burst of hot air. The place is fully roofed and heated to a lovely temperature.

There I am staring around at piles and piles of planks of wood, tiles and tools, all with a roof and four walls around me. Sure, they do have some areas that are outside – the loading and delivery has to be… the firewood and the big stuff… but for the most part… it’s all inside… it’s all warm, and they have a café too… though I’d give it up every time for the chance of a Bunnings sausage!

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