I have been wanting a Ryan Alden pipe for a long time. I was lucky enough to get this author which is one of my favorite shapes. I can only echo the comments made by others here on the forum about what an outstanding person and craftsman Ryan is.
Congrats, that is a nice Alden.
I've picked up three different Strawberry wood pipes. All three makers told me the same thing, smoke it slow the first couple bowls. Other than that, there is not much difference in the way they smoke. Lighter pipes usually so that is nice. You probably won't stop at just the one Alden either. That man can make a nice pipe!