I've found during my learning curve that I almost need to distract myself a little bit while enjoying my "practice smokes" or else I tend to run them too hot. I have been using the drugstore aromatics that came with my starter set more for technique work than pure enjoyment. I'll do some reading, forum surfing, or puttering about in the shop while I simply try to keep the pipe cool, but smoking steadily.
When I fire up a bowl of Frog Morton or EMP though( the only non drugstore tobacco I have thus far), I find myself focusing more on the experience and just enjoying the smoke while trying to train myself to pick out that something distinctive that makes me enjoy them more, but that I can't quite put my finger on.
Do you have a favorite piping co-activity, or do you simply pipe and kick back?