National Geographic : 1986 Oct
Ruled by custom, women of Mogmog, an island in UlithiAtoll, while away the day in the ipul, or women's house, where they must remain duringtheir menstrualperiod.Most women enjoy this breakfrom their normal labors and spend the time happily talking or weaving on looms, at left and upper right. The onset of puberty once called forth a far reachingset of taboos throughoutthe islands of Yap. Today only the most remote still require a young girl, at the first sign of herfirst period, to head immediately for the women's house. As she approaches,the women within begin to chant loud enoughfor the village to hear: "The menstruatingone, ho-o-o!" This triggers hours of erotic dances by both the women in the house and the men of the village. Living in the women's house, the girl may not cook food for the men or eatwith others for eight days; after another six days she may leave, but then only to live apartin her own hut. As these taboos disappear,so too do bamboo and thatch building materialsgive way to more typhoon-resistantconcrete walls. These men (right)raise such a wall for a new house on Mogmog.