John 33: The fixture is ceiling-mounted. It is open to the air, all around its semi-circular glass shade -- and it is not recessed. The bulbs lasted about 4 years, which is about the right number of hours for the amount of use they get.
I Want My HDTV -- thanks for the info re: mercury. Apparently, some CFL manufacturers at the low end of the scale use ,well, low-end components and materials. This is where a fire hazard exists. Better mfrs (Sylvania, Phillips and so on) use UL-rated materials that are designed to be non-flammable. They also use better electronics with components called Voltage Dependent Resistors that are designed to act like fuses when the conditions demand it. When these VDR's go up, they can emit smoke.