The thing I missed about having a job, apart from the money, was the social aspect - the banter, the coffee breaks, the Friday late-afternoon drinks. And now that I'm back in paid employment, I still miss those things.
Because I'm a contractor who charges by the hour, I can't take breaks unless I'm prepared to omit the time from my invoice. During the quiet times, the permies are standing around making idle conversation while I'm intent on doing something billable. Because I've got a young child to go home to (and possibly also because I'm just over Friday drinkies), I'm unlikely to attend my employer's monthly (and paid for) drinks.
I've no doubt that there will eventually be work buddies. But until then I feel a bit like a Nigel No-Mates, eating my lunch in the lounge with a book on my lap and no one to joke with. Thanks goodness I have a life.