As Justin Bieber recently took care to point out, life isn’t necessarily great for celebrities. Even he can’t deny, though, that one of the perks of being rich and famous is the spur-of-the-moment ability to leave all of your problems behind on the opposite coast. That’s exactly what Bieber did last week, which has been news less because of his decision to travel than because his destinations have all proved to be amenable to PDA with the model Hailey Baldwin.
While opting to head off for a romp on the East Coast is quite understandable, Bieber’s choice to do so with Baldwin is something of a surprise. The pair dated briefly—which is to say, between Bieber’s stints with Selena Gomez—before breaking up in 2016, which led to what Baldwin recently called “weirdness” and “a long period of time when we weren’t friends.” (For the record, she also made a point to characterize their current relationship as primarily friendly—though the account @injaileywetrust, which has changed its bio to “THEY’RE BACK BITCHES,” has plenty of images that suggest otherwise.)
Now, however, the two have clearly had a reunion, for which it seems a higher power is, in large part, to thank, seeing as, since their split, both have become prominent figures of the same Hollywood-friendly church scene. Bieber is a fan of the so-called “hip pastor” Carl Lentz’s church, Hillsong, whereas lately Baldwin has preferred (as well as worn merch for) Vous Church. (However, as one apparently does in the scene, she definitely dabbles: “That whole pastor circuit, they’re all friends,” she told the Cut earlier this year. “Everybody is kind of interconnected…so I just kind of know all of them.”)
In short, Baldwin is, just like Gomez, a partner that Bieber can both, to quote TMZ, “praise and rage” with, which is exactly what the pair did in Miami before heading off to New York last week. Since then, they’ve made the bold move over the bridge to Brooklyn, where Bieber took it upon himself to preach his favorite message of love. Far from hiding from fans and photographers, that night and the next day, he made a point to talk with and pose for pics with them—even regramming one of them. (Alas, while making the cardinal Instagram sin of not giving photo credit.)
If you, like many eagle-eyed fans, have begun to wonder if that headless figure next to Bieber is in fact Baldwin, you’re correct. The pair was so publicly affectionate that it was only a matter of time before a video not so slyly pretending not to zoom in on them ended up in the hands of TMZ, which promptly used it to illustrate how “their lips got totally reacquainted” over the weekend. (As unromantic as that phrasing is, apparently it all looked “straight out of a Nicholas Sparks movie.”)
Rather than take in the views of the East River from the Manhattan side, the pair headed to the very periphery of Brooklyn (Manhattan-facing, of course): literally against the railing separating the borough from the water, with Bieber (and his iced coffee) hanging over the edge while pressed up against Baldwin during their makeup sesh. As evening fell, though, they changed up the scenery a bit by switching over to Manhattan’s quite similar Rockefeller Park, which overlooks the Hudson River (and neighboring New Jersey). Just like God’s, their love apparently knows no boundaries.