A video recently went viral on TikTok from Zachery Keesee, who is a North Carolina native, where he posted a scenic video of some gorgeous mountains he’d visited in Switzerland, jokingly labeling the town as Gastonia, North Carolina.
It racked up millions of views, with most people being in on the joke that it obviously wasn’t anywhere near North Carolina.
Well, almost everybody…
Olivia Garcia, a Florida native, was visiting Boone, North Carolina (which is nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains, I’ll give her that much), and decided that she wanted to go to Gastonia and see where the TikTok video was taken for herself.
After about an hour drive to Gastonia, often and affectionately referred to as the “Gashouse,” she quickly realized that she was nowhere near the landscape in the TikTok video.
And as someone who grew up maybe 20 minutes from Gastonia, this is absolutely hilarious.
First of all, I specifically remember my mom always making a joke growing up about putting her “Gastonia ice cube” in her white wine when she wanted it chilled and it hadn’t been in the fridge, if that gives you any more context to what kind of town we’re dealing with here.
And second of all, let’s just say that the town has a reputation for being a little bit rough around the edges… which I love, but if you go there thinking you’re gonna find a nice little vacation town (in Switzerland), I’d highly suggest doing a lot more research than this girl did.
I mean, wouldn’t you quickly Google “Gastonia” on your own just to make sure there was a good place to stop and eat or some place to pull off and hike if she really thought she was going to find the mountains in the video?
I have so many questions…
Olivia and Zachery both sat down with WSOC recently to talk about the whole ordeal, and Olivia explained a little bit more about her realization that she’d been duped:
“Once we started kind of going out of the mountains, I was a little suspicious. I’m like, ‘when are the mountains going to start back up again?
We were 20 minutes out of the way then, and I was like, ‘This doesn’t seem right,’ and once we got there, I was like, ‘Oh God, this isn’t it.’”
Zachery took the high road and apologized to her, which was extremely unnecessary, but at least they all got a good laugh out of it:
“I mean I guess I can formally apologize face-to-face for any inconveniences I have caused you, but it seems you’ve taken it pretty lightly and got the humor out of it and have a funny story.”
Gastonia is, quite literally, the complete and polar opposite of what you can see in Zachery’s TikTok.