Have you ever woken from a night's sleep with the distinct feeling that your brain's been chucked over a cliff side in a barrel full of pebbles? Last night - in a dream which seemed to last the entire eight hours - I got lost at sea, before missing the train to Cork several times; I was part of a funeral procession (complete with a rotating corpse in an open coffin. Hats off to you, unsettling subconscious) inching its way up Croke Patrick. We were then met, at the summit, by a little African child who'd been abandoned. It would appear the mind is wrestling with a multitude of things at present, one of which seems to be the Madonna "adoption" ordeal. According to her Vadgesty, it's none of our "business"... but, sadly, we can't pick and choose what our brains retain during the course of a day.

There is more than a nugget of truth in Aine's comment (scroll to the bottom of Rumours piece), and this page has echoed such sentiments in the past - specifically regarding Sharon Stone and her magic ability to adopt at will (the woman is bats. Rich, but bats). OK, Madonna is building a school in the Malawian village in which 4-year-old Mercy is from. That's noble. The fact she wants to adopt another disadvantaged child is also noble - but why a particular child? Shouldn't Madonna count herself lucky to be entrusted with any child? What gives her the right to pick and choose?

What's more unnerving than her being able to select a specific child is that she's doing so at an accelerated rate. Local human rights spokesman Undule Mwakasungura told The Sun: "Madonna is behaving like a bully because she has status, money and a name. She thinks she can fast-track the adoption." According to The Mirror, ActionAid's Jane Moyo said: "We do not doubt her good intentions. But if at all possible a child should remain in their own family and community." Most tellingly, Maxwell Matewere - of Malawian campaigners Eye of the Child - said: "This is a sad development. Our adoption laws require foreigners to reside here for at least a year."

Meanwhile, here's a slightly different take on things from David Banda's father, Yohane. He spoke to The Mirror after seeing his son - who had been chosen by Madonna - for the first time in a few years: "He asked me in English who I was and what I do. When I told him, 'I am your daddy' he looked surprised… We spent three hours together… he played with my nose and although he did not know who I was he asked me lots of questions. David is quite chatty and intelligent. He asked whether I ride horses but I told him horses are for the rich. He asked me why I am poor." According to The Mirror, "David also revealed to his dad how he misses his nanny, who has just quit working for Madonna: 'He misses her a lot because she used to read him books. Nowadays he has different nannies and he doesn't like the situation… He seems to likes his daddy Mr. Ritchie so much. I was a sad Madonna broke up with him. I would have loved it if they sorted out whatever problems they had instead of divorcing because divorce is bad for kids'."

Despite this upheaval in the young nipper's life, his father (who had already seen two sons die by the time David's adoption came to the fore) believes being chosen by Madonna was a godsend: "I sometimes shudder to think what would have happened to David if Madonna had not rescued him. I am really grateful to her for saving him from possible early death."

Am I the only person confused to the point of paralysis right about now?