Despite having been in Christchurch a couple of times since the big quake in September I hadn't felt any aftershocks until 8am today - but the earth has been very active today, and the wake-up call at 8 was far from the last. Mr Cake and I left just before 10.30am to go to a BodyAttack class at Les Mills, to help mitigate our delicious Christmas dinner, and a couple of minutes along the road Mr Cake commented that he thought there had just been a quake, as the car had swerved slightly unexpectedly - initially he thought it was the car alignment but then realised, and moments later when we came to an intersection and saw that the lights were out we figured out it had been a decent one. Several sets of lights were out - which made for some interesting interpretations of the give way rules - and a couple of fire engines, including the hazmat control unit, passed us on the way into town. There were quite a few bits of obvious damage - though the quake wasn't that large (magnitude 4.9) it was centred right under the CBD, where the buildings are more vulnerable (more of them are brick and stone), so there was quite a bit of damage.
Unfortunately Les Mills had closed, as there was no power or water to their building, but they confirmed the Ferrymead gym was open, so we got our Boxing Day workout in, albeit with a slightly longer journey at either end. Once we'd worked off yesterday's sins we had planned to grab a bite to eat at the Pita Pit on High Street (thanks to a GrabOne deal I nabbed a while back) so headed back into town. Unfortunately navigation was a bit of a challenge as lots of the streets were closed, and our first two attempts at parking (in the Lichfield St/Ballantynes carpark and The Crossing) were scuppered by people ushering us away. We did manage to find a spot on the street a little further down, though, and wandered down High Street, finding that thankfully (Mr Cake was pretty desperate for his lunch!) Pita Pit was still open.
Pita pit is pretty much like Subway, except with pita pockets instead of bread. One of my colleagues gets his lunch from the Wellington one pretty much every day, but the queues (well, and that I tend to bring my lunch most days since it saves me lots of money!) put me off doing that. There was a small queue for us but since we hadn't tried the pitas before it was good to have a couple of minutes to figure out what we wanted.
The main menu lets you choose the protein - I opted for chicken caesar (i.e. chicken and bacon) and Mr Cake chose felafel - and then you pick your spread, salads, cheese and dressing.
The meat is put on to grill as you work your way along the salad bar, and if you want you can have your mushrooms, onion and capsicum fried on the grill if you choose - a great option to have, I thought. Once its all wrapped up you also have the option of having your pita toasted, for some extra yum-factor. And then it gets all wrapped up ready to go - or if you opt for "have here" they rip the top off so you can bite straight into it - easy access. ;-)
We didn't even get as far as the door before we were both chomping into our lunch, and it was delicious - pretty much spot on for a post-Christmas post-workout lunch - both healthy and very satisfying. The salad was great, the dressings were nice (I would have been happy with a little less but then I'm not a big dressing person) and I was really impressed with the chicken and bacon - it actually tasted like what it was, which is no mean feat for a takeaway. Definitely a recommended option for lunch - it's a bit pricey, up to $10.90 for a large pita, but I'd be happy with a smaller one for every day (I actually didn't finish my large one, and I had just come from the gym). Just watch the dressing doesn't leak out the bottom as happened to me!
And as we ate we got to watch workers scurrying about rolling out emergency tape and scrutinising buildings - not our ideal lunchtime entertainment (we'd definitely prefer the ground stayed put and buildings didn't crumble!) but interesting all the same.
What meals do you have to "recover" from your Christmas enjoyment? Do you stretch out the deliciousness or resume normal mealtime transmission immediately?
Pita Pit is located at 250 High Street, Christchurch, ph 03 377 7485, pitapit.co.nz