Pop was a husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather. He was also a great fisherman and storyteller. He had so many stories to tell and so do I, but today I picked three of my favourites. My first story is about my brother Paul and I and an early morning sea urchin expedition Pop took us on. We were staying at Grandma and Pop’s in Wooli and Pop warned us that evening that he would be waking us up early. The following morning we awoke to his voice at around 5am. We got in the 4WD and headed down to the rock pools not knowing what we were in for. Pop wasn't as limber as Paul and I so he asked us to climb 10 feet down into a rock pool filled with sea urchins. Some were bigger than a man’s hand. From above us pop pointed to the sea urchins he wanted us to collect and put into the bucket he lowered down. I asked Paul, being a fisherman also, “what are we doing?” Paul said “just do what Pop says”. After we filled a bucket full of sea urchins which Pop picked out from above, we went home and Pop boiled a huge pot of water and Paul and I were in charge of making toast. We still no idea what we were doing. After the urchins were cooked, pop took a hammer and showed Paul and I how to extract urchin roe from the females. From 10 foot above us, Pop knew exactly which ones were female and which were pregnant. They all looked black and spiky to me. After all the roe was removed and toast done, we spread it on like vegemite and it was amazing. Pop said you better eat up quick and I asked why. Then Grandma and Mum opened the front door and said “ sea urchin roe for breakfast!” and Pop just laughed. A year later I was at the Sydney fish markets and it was $30 for sea urchin roe the size of a matchbox. Pop always knew what he was doing, he just didn't tell you the game plan, you always went along with the flow. My second story. Year’s later pop took Mum and I crabbing in Wooli. We dropped several crab traps down river and we later doubled back to start pulling the pots we first dropped. Both Pop and I are huge fans of crab meat. The first few pots we pulled we caught nothing. Then in the fourth pot we pulled the biggest mud crab I've ever seen which cut open my hand whilst getting it from the trap. Covered in blood and with mum at the helm, I let go of the crab which proceeded to bite pops shin with the larger claw. Pouring blood from his leg, he was more worried about his crab trap becoming tangled than his bleeding leg. That day we had a huge catch and Pop demanded he eat the claw that got him, and he laughed whilst he ate it and we recalled the story to Grandma over lunch. My third and last story. Dinner at Wooli with Grandma, Pop and Mum. I got Pop and I a beer to go with dinner. Pop a Tooheys Old and myself a Tooheys New. During dinner, Pop said “what is that crap you are drinking?” to which I replied, “the same crap as you are drinking”. Pop’s response was “no it's not”, to which my response was “yes it is, you are drinking Tooheys Old because you are old, and I'm drinking Tooheys New because I am new”. Grandma and Mum erupted into laughter, Pop just gave me a big grin. You’re one of the toughest men I know and you will be missed. Paul said it the best earlier this week when he said, Rest In Peace Pop, the fishing’s better where you’re going. ### RIP Pop. See you on the other side. Love ya mate, Michael
I say farewell on this day I wish you well on your way You will always be in my heart Too many in life you played an important part. Most of all by grandma’s side Now you must go out with the tide Find peace at sea among the fishes Goodbye dear old pop and best wishes. Sooty will greet you with kisses I bet your face she has misses Allan hasn’t seen you for all these years His dear father is coming home and is near A last message I will send too My love goes with you.
When I think of Grandpa the first memory that comes to my mind if the first time I was old enough to go fishing on his boat out at sea. I had a bad reputation of getting car sick, so we took all the precautions and I took tablets and was wearing the motion sickness wrist bands. It was early and just light but we didn't even get to the break wall when I started being sick over the edge of the boat. As we headed out further to sea, I spent the entire time lying on my back or over the edge of the boat. When we got to a spot to fish and the boat stopped it just got worse. My grandfather initially had no sympathy thinking I would get over it. But after half an hour he said in all of years of fishing he'd never seen anyone get so sick and I was making everyone else feel sick. So the others pulled in their lines and we headed back to shore. I remember him saying that although both my grandparents were fisherman, it was questionable if I really was a Bellamy with my poor sea legs. Since I was ruing everyone else’s fun they decided to slowly cruise past the jetty and I would jump off. Being as sick and dizzy as I was, I jumped off and missed the jetty. I was wet and had to walk back to their house in Wooli but alot happier. And none of the grand children will forget then time we decided to camp on the beach and dug a big hole in the sand and put a tarp over the top. We thought we were in for a fun night sleeping out. But it was pitch black, and while bunkering down in our tent an army of soldier crabs started pouring into our hole and we all ran out screaming. Grandpa had collected a bucket of crabs and let them loose on us. After that we decided to camp in the lounge room. Goodbye grandpa, Lots of love and I wish you all the best.