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Freelancer and working away - do you feel you're missing out on community life?

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PaxUniversalis Tue 05-Dec-17 23:47:46

I work as a freelancer developing projects and all types of events on behalf of corporate clients. I work mainly from home but I also work away, both in the UK and abroad. The number of times that I work away from home is going to increase in the next couple of years.
It includes weekend work.

I'm married and my DH also works away regularly. He stays away 1 night per week but he is always at home at weekends.

We live in a small, rural market town. I love my job and I wouldn't want to change the type of work I do, or go back to being an employee, but sometimes I feel a little bit that I'm missing out on local community life. When I work away I'm away for 2 to 7 days. Gradually, and in the foreseeable future I will be away 1 week out of 4, and occasionally even 2 separate weeks out of 4 (once or twice a year).
Not very long in the grand scheme of things but there have been occasions where I've missed out on community events or get togethers with local friends who don't work weekends.

None of our friends here work away. Ever. They either work locally or commute to larger cities but they all come home at night and are here most weekends. Some of our friends are retired now.

It's happened a few times that I was invited to meet up but I had to say no thanks because I was going away for work. Or there's a local event I'm missing out on, especially during the summer months (e.g. village fêtes, great occasions to meet up with local friends and neighbours).

I know what I signed up for and I love my job 100% but I was wondering if anyone else feels like this sometimes?
It's just that sometimes I get comments from people like 'oh, you're off AGAIN, what a shame we won't see you on Saturday'.
Of course our friends and acquaintances do go on holidays or weekends away themselves, so they're not always around either but they're here far more often than I am.

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