Nicolas Olivier: I was seduced by the wild nature
By Andrea Louis
A business consultant, organic farmer and spiritual teacher has chosen the hills of Dominica to be one with nature and make a home while giving his talent to the people.
Nicolas Olivier, or 'Nico', also goes by 'Agouti' to residents in the east, "they call me 'Agouti' because I love to live in the wild environment," he shared.
Originally from France, Olivier initially visited Dominica in 2004.
"A friend told me about Dominica and said I would like the place," he said.
The nature lover also recalls in detail his impression of the country.
"I was seduced by the wild nature. I was coming from Martinique, and there are not many untouched places remaining. I found the nature was very sweet, welcoming, and friendly," Olivier said.
He revealed that being in Dominica was a dream come true.
"I would hike up any river and go up as far as I could without meeting one human, building, or electrical wire," he reminisced. "That was my dream because when I was a child, I wanted to be like Tarzan or Robinson Crusoe," he said.
Nicolas moved to Dominica in 2006 to live a life aligned with his morals.
"I was looking for my second life," he said. "I was living a stressful life in Europe, then I decided to shift and look for a place where I could live according to my principles and emancipate myself from the Western materialistic world, what I call Babylon."
Content to retreat to Dominica's mountains, he recalls, "When I chose this very simple life 18 years ago, some people were sceptical. Now, more people understand my choice because they realize that the global system is dysfunctional."
Olivier believes in and practices sustainable living, growing his food, collecting and using water responsibly, and harnessing solar power. The surplus crops he harvests are shared with older people in the surrounding communities.
"I give love to the plants; they give love back in food, and I spread the love by passing the food to the elderly. My reward is more love from grannies and grandpas, and my circle is complete; it is a loop of love," he said. "That is the way I like to see my life."
Olivier holds a special place in his heart for senior citizens.
"Some elderly people became my friends, my teachers and my guides. My dear friend, Daniel, a very wise man who died in 2022 at 103 years, said, 'Nico, the problem is that before love was our pillar. Now what people want is money,' and that summarized the root of the problem in our society," Olivier said.
During almost 20 years here, this spiritual teacher has observed changes that reflect the wider world.
"There is more stress now," he said. " When I first came, people were more worry-free. Dominica was a little more protected from Babylon system craziness."
Nico also noticed a shift in some cultural norms, which were more prominent two decades ago. "Before, a village would be a family and raise a child. That was a beautiful thing that worked and brought social balance and harmony. Now, this is disappearing. It is still there, just not as much," he said.
In love with nature and the benefits of being in tune with one's spiritual self, Olivier is pleased to lend his talents to those who desire deeper awareness.
"I am a teacher of presence, trying to infuse positive vibrations and consciousness everywhere I go," he said. "I help people reduce their stress and emotional distress; I am here to build a better world and will support any movement/group with that same goal."
Satisfied with his choice to make Dominica home, Olivier reaffirmed his love for the country and its people, committing to help its progress however he could.
"I hope my work on the farm will inspire more people to go into organic farming because I am confident this is the future. I believe in a real green, organic Dominica. I trust we can make it happen."