In your “Bless Your Heart” moment of the day, Olivia Garcia road tripped with her family to the Carolinas from Jupiter, Florida, to check out the snow during Winter Storm Izzy last week. While driving to Angel Oak Park in Charleston, S.C., the 26-year-old found a TikTok video labeled “Gastonia, NC.”
Mesmerized by the mountains in the video, she convinced her family to make a detour. “I’m from south Florida, so the closet thing we have to mountains down here are landfills, which is why I was so excited when I saw the TikTok,” Garcia told the Observer. “I had never heard of Gastonia before, but the name sounded like something out of a Disney movie.”
What Garcia did not know is that the TikTok was actually a video of Lauterbrunnen, Switzerland, not Gastonia, west of Charlotte.“I realized when we were like 20 minutes out that something wasn’t right,” she said.
“There were no mountains in sight, only “run-down gas stations” and no working bathrooms,” Garcia said. “The only nearby mountains was a hiking park. I’m sure there’s a nicer part of town, but we didn’t stick around long enough to find out.” The mortified and embarrassed, Garcia made a TikTok of her own acknowledging that she got “RickRolled” into believing that Gastonia was a village in Switzerland.
The genius behind the TikTok Garcia found was 22-year-old Zachary Keesee, who felt bad about the whole situation.
“I told her I was sorry on her video,” said Keesee, who lives in Durham, N.C., and graduated from N.C. State. “She seemed to take some humor out of it, and said it was OK.”
Keesee’s TikTok of “Gastonia” has over 5.7 million views and is one of 19 “Not Carolina” videos he’s posted over the past several weeks. The mislabeled videos were inspired by a friend who went skiing in the Rockies and posted a picture of his trip on social media with the caption “I love skiing in Boone,” Keesee said.
The videos in Keesee’s TikToks are from different places he has traveled to over the years. In a video with over 318,000 views, he took a video of the Duomo di Milano Cathedral in Milan, Italy, and labeled it “Concord Mills Mall, North Carolina.”