thanks, u/d, for bringing this really great thread back to the top. i think your experience and the others here, are awesome, in the apostate truthful sort of way.
i have been to several bethels when i was pioneering about nine years ago. but like you say, the lack of love and sincerety is abundant at all the bethels:
canadia: totally depressing. it's like the geriatric wing of a hostpital, but with lots of young guys who act like old guys thrown in for good measure. not much else to say.
brooklyn: uninspiring apart from the view of manhattan. actually, anti-climatic. but that was fixed later in portugal (see below). being in NYC was the great part.
wakill and patterson: again, uninspiring. no one interested in me at all. just another number coming for a tour. like all tours. no holy spirit.
france: exciting because the government was kicking some JW ass at the time. fired up my persecution complex like nothing else.
rome: situated on an official roman archaeological site, with their own wine cellar and vinyard! so that was cool. young bro giving me the tour took the afternoon off work somehow, and we drank all afternoon in his room. first introduction to grappa. lol! he tought me how to say i am canadian in italian sign language. that was hilarious. he was sicillian, and said everything from the heart. i bet he's not even a wit anymore now that i think about his rare personality. the highlight of rome though, was visiting the vatican, lol.
portugal: i got to spend a few nights there. they had beer and wine with diner, so that was cool, and had a great view of the atlantic. i was late for breakfast every morning. i guess i shouldn't have stayed up so late at night with that bethelite sister. so, without much more to say, portugal was the best ascention of any holy mounting i have ever experienced. i could finally feel the love... amen.
TS (of the paying my dues to bethel class)