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How to win friends – and keep them16 Sep 3:00am

How to win friends – and keep them

The Guardian
Emma Beddington has never mastered the art of friendship – so when she moved back to her hometown, she turned to science instead. But would it open doors? Moving back to my childhood home town after 25 years has meant many things keep me awake at night. What have we done, will my sons start taking spice, why is York obsessed with bubble tea and Harry Potter, where did all these seagulls come from? One that recurs frequently, late at night, as the birds shriek outside my window is: will I make friends here? We have just arrived after 12 years in Brussels and the past few weeks have been a whirl of call-centre absurdity and cardboard boxes. Soon, though, things will calm down, my 14- and 16-year-old boys will vanish, as teenagers do, my husband will return to Brussels for work and I will be home alone. My tally of local mates stands at one: my late mother’s 71-year-old best friend, to whom I have attached myself, limpet-like, revelling in a shared love of cake and gloomy chat. I sign up to meet others, speak French and drink ‘du bon ale’
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