Israelis in costume attend the annual Purim parade in Holon, near Tel Aviv, Israel, on March 1. Purim celebrates the Jews' salvation from genocide in ancient Persia, as recounted in the Scroll of Esther. Ariel Schalit/AP
An aerial view shows flooded mobile homes in L'aiguillon sur Mer, France, on March 1 following a major storm named Xynthia hit the region. Regis Duvignau/Reuters
A motorcyclist rides through a flooded street in Jakarta, Indonesia, on Monday. Heavy rain caused flooding in parts of the capital. Beawiharta/Reuters
A dog sleeps beside a destroyed sofa in Dichato, Chile, on March 1 after an 8.8-magnitude earthquake struck Chile on Saturday. Natacha Pisarenko/AP
On March 1, people wait for water at a camp set up for earthquake survivors in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, after a major earthquake struck the nation in January. Esteban Felix/AP
Police stand outside the Labor Ministry in Athens, Greece, on Monday. About 150 left-wing protesters tried to force their way into the building, where Europe's Financial Affairs Chief Olli Rehn was meeting with Labor Minister Andreas Loverdos. The EU pressed Greece hard to make more painful budget cuts amid reports that fellow European nations such as France and Germany are preparing a financial rescue to get the country out of its debt crisis. Thanassis Stavrakis/AP
At Independence Hall in Cheonan near Seoul, South Korea, students walk among South Korean national flags during the 91st anniversary of the March First Independence Movement against Japanese colonial rule. Jo Yong-Hak/Reuters
First Lady Michelle Obama smiles as she speaks to hundreds of school nutrition professionals to advocate for adequate funds for healthy school meals at the School Nutrition Association Annual Legislative Action Conference in Washington on March 1. Jason Reed/Reuters
Cincinnati Reds left fielder Jonny Gomes makes a leaping catch during baseball spring training on March 1 in Goodyear, Ariz. Mark Duncan/AP
Residents in Concepcion, Chile, collect water from children's swimming pools after the major earthquake struck the region on Saturday. Chile's government scrambled on Monday to provide aid to thousands of homeless people in coastal towns devastated by a massive earthquake and tsunamis, as 10,000 troops patrolled to quell looting. Jose Luis Saavedra/Reuters
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (l.) and outgoing Uruguayan President Tabare Vazquez view the skyline of downtown Montevideo, Uruguay on March 1. Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP
Palestinians gather around buses as they wait to enter Egypt through the Rafah border crossing between the Gaza Strip and Egypt, on March 1. Eyad Baba/AP
For a visiting journalist, the country of today feel worlds away from the China she first encountered decades earlier.
ByAnn Scott Tyson
The ultra-sleek bullet train, floating on a magnetic cushion, accelerates as it leaves Shanghai’s Pudong International Airport for the megacity of 24 million people. Outside, a futuristic metropolis unfolds. Curved skyscrapers and raised freeways flash by until they blur. Inside the car, green digits above the doorway shoot upward: 200 kilometers per hour ... 300 ... 431.