One of my absolute favourite places in Old Ottawa South is Yardley's Antique Furniture. It's always a treasure hunt/obstacle course in the sardine can-packed, dusty three floors of Yardley's. I can find a century's worth of ephemera inside from fantastically tacky ornaments that one normally finds in a nursing home to luxurious antique club chairs, marble lamps and gorgeously hand-carved armoires and side tables.
I love to get lost in the labyrinthine walkways and outdoor storage spaces seeing, touching, and connecting with the history inside. There's stone gargoyles, cast iron front-gate animal guards, Winston Churchill English bulldog paperweights, century old perfume bottles, and even a full bar, complete with hand carved woodwork, glass racks and taps. I often find myself digging through the photo and postcard bins - items discarded at estate sales usually - staring at the decades-old black and white photos of unknown faces, their smiles and stares evoking the wisdom of lives lived and adventures long-since realized.