This past weekend, with temperatures in Portland surpassing 100 degrees, Valarie and I headed for our favorite oasis. In the otherwise junky beach town of Newport, there is a little neighborhood called Nye Beach that we absolutely adore. It's a cluster of restaurants, used book stores, a couple bakeries, and hotels, all very walkable and adjacent to the ocean. Although the Sylvia Beach Hotel is the lodging most people know (it's famous for rooms themed after different noteworthy novelists), we far prefer the adjacent Nye Beach Hotel, which has an unlikely but charming sort of tropical, Key West ambiance. Contrary to the overwhelming majority of hotels I've stayed in, this one has a lot of personal touches in terms of its decor. And while it can be rough around the edges in terms of broken bathroom tiles, terrible TV reception and burned out light bulbs, we can also stay there for not much more than $100 in a room with two ocean-front balconies and an in-room jacuzzi. While Portland sizzled the last few days with record temperatures (I really hate July and August climate), we strolled along the beach amidst a picturesque fog and breeze, all checking in under 65 degrees. Like it says in the Bible's 23rd Psalm, it "restoreth my soul".