How We Watched IMAX Movies at the Boston Museum of Science for FREE and Why It Was One of the Best Days Ever

Besides the yearly NCAA Basketball tournament, there is another type of March Madness I wanted my student to experience. At the Museum of Science, Boston, IMAX movies are FREE on Fridays during the month of March. (As I post this, it is the last week of March of 2019, which means there is only one more Friday to take advantage of it. If that has passed, look for it again next March.)

Unlike previous field trips with my student, I decided to see if another homeschool family wanted to join us. This other family also had an 11-year-old boy whose older siblings were out of the house pursuing their education. The four of us had planned to meet at the science museum and spend the day together. We were all very much looking forward to seeing each other and having a casual Friday.

That’s when I found out about the accident.

On the way to the museum, one of my sons in college texted me that he had spent the night in the emergency room after being in a car accident. My husband, who was “Ubering” us to the museum that morning, concentrated on not getting into an accident of his own, while I tried to get details. Basically, my son had walked away with only a minor head injury; the ER cleared him of any serious concussion.

Reassured, my husband dropped us off, asked to be kept informed, and went off to work.

As I navigated the crowded museum lobby keeping an eye out for our friends, more details filtered in from my college student, who is two time zones and a plane flight away. His leg was bruised, but not too badly. And while its screen was shattered, his phone still worked. He was the only passenger and the driver’s knee got pretty banged up. “Given how bad it looked it’s honestly miraculous what any injuries of ours are,” was how he summed it up.

By this point, I had met up with our friends in line to see the first IMAX movie. I was pretty distracted with all the news from my college student, but since it could have been so much worse, all I could feel was gratitude. Just before the movie started, we texted back and forth about how he was doing. He said he still planned to go to the one class he had that day. Despite the circumstances, he saw no reason to break his perfect streak of not missing a college class. I just shook my head and concluded he would be just fine. I didn’t hear from him again for a few hours. In the meantime, I thought I might as well enjoy the show.

The IMAX screen in the theater was curved so it practically filled our field of vision. Thus we were totally immersed in the Great Barrier Reef. It was totally awesome.

After that, we spent an inordinate amount of time at the gift shop. For some reason, the boys felt compelled to see every last thing that the gift shop sold. But it was casual Friday and that was fine with us moms. I thought seriously about getting this shirt.

My student really got excited about this book.

“She’s a YouTuber! She makes really cool stuff.” Such enthusiasm warmed my STEM heart and I promised him we would get it.

After a quick bite for lunch, it was time to actually see some exhibits!

My student had fun while we took pictures of the globe.

As my student pointed out the correct location of the Great Barrier Reef, I was gratified to confirm that learning had indeed occurred! Then he wanted to play Atlas.

We made sure to see the Nature's Superheroes exhibit which was only on display for a few more weeks.

He and his friend had fun playing the feed the green shrimp game.

We had fun seeing them play together.

When my student wasn’t goofing around with his friend, he took great pleasure in reading out loud the explanations of whatever exhibit was in front of us.

As we headed to the line to wait for another IMAX movie, I received this picture of the accident.

My son was in the front passenger seat of the car on the left.

And this is the front of the car he was in.

Just. Wow.

I kind of forgot to take pictures of our field trip after that.

I was even more grateful that God had spared my son. I could have been flying across the country and sitting in a hospital, but I wasn’t. On my son’s Instagram, he said: “I have little doubt God had the whole situation in His hands - the fact that I’m still alive indicates pretty clearly to me that He’s still got stuff for me to do down here.”

And some of that stuff is to be a big brother. My student expressed shock at the pictures as did my friends, my husband, and the family members I sent the pictures to. It seemed fitting that I was surrounded by science, marveling at crumple zones and airbags that minimized the impact. While the driver of the other car, who had been going at least 60 in a 35 mph zone, sustained a large cut on his forehead, my son reported that the other driver didn't appear to be in critical condition or close to it. We thank God and we thank the engineers at the Ford Motor Company. Those cars will never carry passengers again, but the humans came away free to live the life that God has in store for them.

It was not the casual Friday I was expecting, but it was one of the best days ever.

And it will make the day we use this new cookbook all the sweeter.

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